CPOC Manifesto: A Blueprint for NHS Efficiency

Published: 12/04/2024

CPOC Manifesto 2024

CPOC has developed a manifesto ahead of the forthcoming general election to provide ideas for political parties to incorporate into their own manifestos. We advocate for the NHS to continue to mandate perioperative care with the establishment of a transformation fund to overcome initial financial barriers to setting perioperative services up; and the incorporation of perioperative care into the inspection frameworks of organisations such as the CQC.

Executive Summary
  • NHS waiting lists are at crisis levels.
  • The NHS has too many cancellations, complications, and lengthy hospital stays – often due to patients arriving for surgery in an unfit state.
  • These can be avoided by concerted action to turn waiting lists into preparation lists, including screening and actively supporting patients to improve and maintain their health while they wait.
  • Better procedures to help patients drink, eat and mobilise after surgery can improve patient outcomes and reduce length of hospital stay, and better discharge planning can reduce readmission rates.
  • National NHS bodies, including NHS England, should continue and expand efforts to mandate, encourage and facilitate adoption of these measures.
  • Implementing these policies would save the NHS money, but set-up costs are a barrier. Hence, we propose a £100 million ‘NHS efficiencies transformation fund’.
  • Health regulators, including the Care Quality Commission (CQC), should incentivise implementation through modifying their assessment frameworks.
Each year around 135,000

On-the-day surgical cancellations take place, estimated to cost the NHS £400 million annually in lost operating theatre time

NHS waiting lists are at record levels but could be cut drastically by transforming the surgical pathway. The NHS could vastly improve its efficiency, and improve patient outcomes, by turning waiting lists into preparation lists, taking simple steps to get patients drinking, eating, and mobilising after surgery and better discharge planning. The potential for the NHS to increase the number of successful operations and save millions of pounds is huge, but first we need some additional investment to turn pockets of best practice into a transformation of how we care for patients. The evidence for these interventions is there, we just need to get them implemented.

Dr David Selwyn
CPOC Director