Services that provide emergency care to older people in their own homes

A recent request on the LIS Medical mailing list asked people for examples of services that provide emergency care to older people in their own homes – and the group came up with a number of really useful examples. These have been added to our Hot Topic page – Acute Services in the Community under Case studies by Clinical Specialty – Frail Elderly.

This is a great example of collaborative work between medical librarians.

Dementia and Housing

Following a suggestion from a reader, we have added the following to the Dementia section of the page on specific conditions:

Dementia and housing: An assessment tool for local commissioning a self-assessment tool by Housing LIN which focuses on local commissioning processes and decision-making. The tool combines all available assets and resources to create the conditions that reduce the risk of developing dementia, and to develop a framework of support to help those with dementia, their families and carers, to have as good a quality of life as possible.

Submit your suggestions for the Handbook to Anne Gray.

Communities of practice in commissioning

I was asked recently if I could suggest places where commissioners share their experiences, or ask their commissioner colleagues for advice or help. We know that colleagues are the first port of call for commissioners to get advice (or even evidence), so I decided to pull together a list of those I know about.

There must be more so take a look at the Communities of practice page and forward your suggestions to me.

Anne Gray

Are outpatients services better in the community?

Outpatient services and primary care: scoping review, substudies and international comparisons. Health Serv Deliv Res 2016;4(15)

This study updates a 2006 literature review on ways of improving the effectiveness and efficiency of hospital outpatient services. A review of the current literature found that substantial areas of care traditionally given in hospitals can be transferred to primary care. For example, relocating specialists to work in the community is popular with patients, and joint working between specialists and general practitioners (GPs) can be of substantial educational value. A series of substudies investigated five areas: referral management centres, in-house review of referrals by GPs, financial incentives to reduce referrals, consultants contracted to community organisations and, last, international experiences of moving care from hospital into the community. They conclude that high-quality care in the community can be provided for many conditions and is popular with patients, but may not always be cheaper.

Added to the Acute Care in the community page of the Handbook.

Health Statistics Landscape

The UK Statistics Authority recently convened a round table meeting with leaders of health statistic providers in England to discuss making the health and care statistics system more helpful, innovative, professional, efficient and capable.

A useful appendix item from the round table was a pdf document detailing the current health statistics landscape in England.  The landscape shows which providers hold which datasets; it doesn’t include URLs, years available, geographies etc but it may be a good starting point for scoping out a new topic.

This has been added to the Datasets page of the Handbook.

QIPP Prescribing


This resource is specifically aimed at primary care commissioners that support quality, optimised prescribing for patients. An NHS funded not-for-profit organisation it publishes evidence-based resources and tools and a platform to share innovation across the NHS.

The site includes a number of Webkits of topical interest – collections of resources around a range of topics including Care Homes, Polypharmacy & deprescribing, Transfer of care and Self care.

Registration is free to NHS organisations including CCGs and CSUs.

It has been added to the page of resources for specific conditions and Best practice and innovation of the Handbook.

No magic bullet for managing demand in planned care

There is no best practice manual to be found out there or in this report to guide health-care personnel on when, where and how to make referrals.”

That is the conclusion of this realist synthesis of evidence around demand management for planned care, but the report does stress that it is not a hopeless, unfathomable, insoluble task. There are many, diverse, hard-won, local and adaptive solutions. The report presents evidence behind a range of  the common approaches in detail, including- referral management systems, GPWSpIs and use of guidelines, and the final chapter offers some guidance on how commissioners might ‘think through’ the interdependencies through a series of Prompts.

A really useful addition to our Hot Topic on Demand Management page.

Pawson R, Greenhalgh J, Brennan C. Demand management for planned care: a realist synthesis. Health Serv Deliv Res 2016;4(2)

Resources from health service reviews

There are many health service reviews going on across the country, and sometimes they publish useful resources which can be used elsewhere. Two examples here:

Compendium of Clinical Evidence (December 2014) is a collection of guidelines and standards compiled for the review in Dorset  – see Dorset VIsion. There is also a compilation of case examples on models of care.  The authors are not named.

The review in Shropshire – Future Fit –  was supported by Central Midlands CSU who carried out rapid reviews of the evidence across the different services which are published here.

These have been added to the Handbook. If you come across other useful resources like this do send the link to

Evidence Live 2016

Hi all
One of the themes of Evidence Live 2016 is on the use of evidence in commissioning –

Theme 5. Translating Evidence into Better-Quality Health Services
Commissioning health services based on evidence remains a priority for affordable health-care that does not waste unnecessary resources. Abstracts are sought that focus on:
• Consider the science behind the implementation of evidence in practice
• Recognize the facilitators and barriers to implementation as well as how they might be utilized or overcome
• Discuss the challenges and methods to improve the development of evidence based clinical policy
• Facilitate improved access to the highest quality evidence for translation into quality of patient care
Deadline: Workshops – November 30th 2015, Oral & Poster – January 30th 2016

It would be great if we could get NHS LKS submissions here. Any ideas?