New clinical policies offering latest evidence led treatments published

A black and white photo of a stethoscope.
A black and white photo of a stethoscope.

NHS Cheshire and Merseyside is publishing 35 clinical policies for treatments and procedures that have been updated in line with the latest knowledge of what works best, in the second phase of its harmonisation programme to also ensure equal access for patients no matter which part of the area they live in.

These policies cover some specific treatments and procedures, such as chronic low back pain, radiofrequency denervation and fibroids uterine artery embolisation, which often only benefit certain groups of patients in some particular medical circumstances. The policies set out when and often where these treatments and procedures should be used and which patients would benefit medically from them.

A total of 113 policies inherited by NHS Cheshire and Merseyside from predecessor clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) are being reviewed during the lifetime of the programme. This is to remove any variation that exists between different CCG areas and to ensure they meet the most up to date medical evidence, guidance and best practice.

49 policies were harmonised and published in the first phase of this review in May 2023. This second phase brings the total of completed policies up to 84. Importantly, there has been no change in the way patients experience and access the treatments and procedures covered by these policies as a result of harmonising them.

Professor Rowan Pritchard-Jones, medical director for NHS Cheshire and Merseyside, said:

Information:

“We want to ensure our patients benefit from treatments and procedures that are recommended as having the best outcomes based on latest evidence, rather than those that offer little or no medical benefit. It’s also important our policies are fair and equal for everyone across Cheshire and Merseyside and our review is also reducing any differences there might have historically been between different areas.”

NHS Cheshire and Merseyside is in the process of working with partners to harmonise the remaining 29 policies. This work includes looking at the level of public involvement needed for each harmonised policy of how we both share information and invite feedback where it is required. 

You can find all the policies that have been harmonised and approved so far on the NHS Cheshire and Merseyside website along with more information about the programme.

Anyone with comments or queries about the policy harmonisation review is asked to email them to dt-ci@cheshireandmerseyside.nhs.uk.