The Arden & GEM procurement team has been highly commended at the HSJ Value Awards in the Financial or Procurement Initiative of the Year category. Respected as a benchmark for excellence, the HSJ Value Awards seek to recognise and reward outstanding efficiency, improvements in patient care and reduction in variation.
The recognition is in acknowledgement of a highly ambitious procurement programme, run in partnership with and on behalf of NHS England, to increase access to Proton Beam Therapy (PBT) treatment for NHS cancer patients.
Since 2008, the NHS has sent over 1,200 cancer patients overseas for PBT treatment – a form of radiotherapy which can be used to treat cancer affecting areas where it is important to reduce damage to the surrounding tissue – predominantly to the United States. However, not all eligible patients are well enough or able to travel and the time constraints within certain treatment pathways preclude transatlantic travel.
Within England, two NHS PBT centres are currently being developed in Manchester and London with full service delivery expected by 2022. To give the new centres time to increase clinical expertise and capacity in a safe and controlled manner, and to ensure as many patients as possible could continue to access treatment, a new PBT provider was needed.
Arden & GEM worked in partnership with NHS England to run a complex eight month procurement, focused on patient need at every stage. The initiative has successfully appointed a centre in Germany, under a new three year contract, which has and will continue to extend treatment to more patients and has already delivered £3.1m in savings.
“We are delighted to have received this commendation for a hugely complex and sensitive procurement. Thanks to excellent partnership working and extensive engagement with patients, clinicians and potential suppliers, this programme is providing the best care and the best experience for as many patients as possible while delivering cost savings for the NHS. It has made a real difference for children and young people with rare cancers by increasing PBT treatment capacity and access.”
Surinder Kahlon, Senior Procurement Manager at NHS Arden & GEM
Read more about the project to increase access to PBT treatment here.