FSRH statement: Co-commissioning of SRH services can only become the norm with full accountability across the system
Date: 23 Jul 2019
Type: FSRH Press Releases and Statements
The Government published the long-awaited prevention green paper yesterday evening. We support the call for the NHS and local authorities to work more closely to deliver joined up care for patients with collaborative commissioning becoming the norm for SRH services. We are also pleased to see that the Government is considering calls for a Sexual Health strategy that includes reproductive health. However, ambitions cannot be delivered without accountability across the system and sustained investment in Public Health.
The Faculty of Sexual and Reproductive Healthcare (FSRH) welcomes the Government’s acknowledgement that the commissioning of sexual and reproductive healthcare (SRH) services continues to be highly fragmented, and that collaborative commissioning in this area is very patchy.
Sexual and reproductive healthcare services have been affected by a lack of accountability and ownership, which has led to variation across the country and a system where prevention is disincentivised. For co-commissioning to become the norm in the country, we need clear lines of accountability across the system.
It is also important for the Sexual and Reproductive Health Strategy to have a strong focus on women’s health and contraception in particular.
Federico Moscogiuri, CEO of the Faculty of Sexual and Reproductive Healthcare (FSRH), said:
‘Unplanned pregnancies contribute to higher demand for maternity services and abortion care, and we now have the highest number of abortions on record. Unintended pregnancies can have a negative effect on women's lives and result in poor - and - preventable health outcomes for both mother and babies, also accruing increased costs to the NHS.
Therefore, we look forward to working with the Government to develop a strategy that places access to contraceptive care at the core of a preventative approach to health. There is no sexual health without women’s health.
‘Finally, the ambitions in the prevention green paper cannot be delivered without sustained investment in Public Health. Cuts are set to deepen to a 25% real-terms reduction in sexual health spend between 2014 and 2020, jeopardising the ability of different commissioners to plan beyond the short-term. We call on the new Prime Minister to commit to fully fund Public Health services in the next Spending Review.’
- The prevention green paper and consultation document can be accessed here
- Estimates by the King’s Fund account for a £700m real-terms reduction in the Public Health grant between 2014/15 and 2019/20 and a 25% real-terms reduction in sexual health spend between 2014/15 and 2019/20
- In response to the Health and Social Care Select Committee report on potential changes to legislation proposed in the NHS Long-Term Plan, FSRH, alongside The Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG), has called for co-commissioning of SRH services to end existing fragmentation and provide better care for patients
- The medical profession has realised the detrimental effects of fragmented commissioning of SRH services and, alongside the RCOG and FSRH, the Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP) and the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges (AoMRC) have called for an end to the fragmentation of these services.
- The Faculty of Sexual and Reproductive Healthcare (FSRH) is the largest UK professional membership organisation working at the heart of sexual and reproductive health (SRH), supporting healthcare professionals to deliver high quality care. It works with its 15,000 members, to shape sexual reproductive health for all. It produces evidence-based clinical guidance, standards, training, qualifications and research into SRH. It also delivers conferences and publishes the journal BMJ Sexual & Reproductive Health in partnership with the BMJ.
For further information please contact:
FSRH External Affairs & Standards Manager