The percentage values for individual independent sector treatment centres (ISTCs) are commercially sensitive and release at this time would adversely affect the Department’s ability to achieve best value from these contracts. An average across the programme was nearly 80 per cent. in 2005-06.
The Department procured independent sector capacity on the basis of capacity planning exercises conducted through strategic health authorities where the additional capacity in elective treatment and diagnostics required to meet key public service agreement waiting times targets was estimated. Where the estimates of demand have not been met so far in a contract the Department is working with the national health service and independent providers to ensure contracts deliver best value over the life of the contract.
Infection rates in independent sector treatment centres are not collected centrally currently. However, independent sector providers providing national health service services within wave one of the independent sector treatment centre programme are contractually obliged to report any serious untoward incidents, including infections, to the Department.
Providers are also obliged to report outbreaks of infectious diseases to the Healthcare Commission under the provisions of the Private and Voluntary Health Care Regulations 2001. As part of the phase two procurement key performance indicators will include returns on MSRA and other hospital acquired infections
The Department maintains a continuing dialogue with the national health service North West in relation to the procurement of independent sector treatment centre (ISTC) services in the North West as part of phase two of the ISTC programme. NHS North West in turn engages with key stakeholders including primary care trusts and hospital trusts. As part of the phase two procurement process the local NHS, through SHAs, must confirm their support for ISTC schemes before preferred bidders are appointed and before contracts are awarded.