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The NHS in England: The operating framework for 2008/9

  • Author:
    Department of Health
  • Published date:
    13 December 2007
  • Gateway reference:
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These documents have now been superseded by:

Operating Framework for 2008-09

The 2008-09 Operating Framework set out:

The health and service priorities for the year ahead: freeing up the front line by moving towards local stretch targets, whilst delivering on national priorities. 2008/09 is the start of the next three-year planning round. In this context, the Operating framework sets out the priorities and planning framework for the NHS for the 2008/09 financial year, within the context of the 3 year CSR period 2008/09 ā€“ 2010/11;

The reform levers and enabling strategies: reform with a purpose ā€“ to improve services. The focus will be on developing world class commissioning as the key agent for change on behalf of patients and the public, using the full range of levers and incentives to transform services and improve outcomes;

The financial regime: setting out a framework that fully supports reform goals and incentivises transformational improvements in services within available resources. Key to this will be the need to sustain the surpluses the NHS is on track to deliver;

The business processes: ensuring a business-like and transparent approach to planning that supports locally led decisions whilst providing accountability. There is a strong emphasis on genuine partnership working at a local level with local government and other partners to ensure that local health and wellbeing needs are better understood and addressed in partnership.

As Annex DĀ  of the Operating Framework, we have published clear statement of the principles and rules governing co-operation and competition for NHS funded services:

As Annex E of the Operating Framework, we have published the documentation for the new standard NHS contract for acute services:

The Operating Framework is underpinned by guidance setting out the practical changes to the system next year - focusing on allocations, tariff and the new duty of joint strategic needs assessment.


David Nicholson discusses the operating framework.

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