Clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) commission (or buy) most of the hospital and community NHS services in the local areas for which they are responsible.
Commissioning involves deciding what services are needed for diverse local populations and ensuring they are provided.
CCGs are assured by NHS England, which retains responsibility for commissioning primary care services such as GP and dental services, as well as some specialised hospital services. Many GP services are now co-commissioned with CCGs.
All GP practices now belong to a CCG, but CCGs also include other health professionals, such as nurses.
Services commissioned by CCGs include:
- most planned hospital care
- rehabilitative care
- urgent and emergency care (including out-of-hours)
- most community health services
- mental health and learning disability services.