Accountability is the obligation of an individual or organisation to accept responsibility for their actions; and to be able to provide satisfactory reasons for acting as they did; and to disclose or actively share their decisions and the thinking behind them.
Clinical effectiveness means that a treatment, ‘treatment pathway’ or service works well and does what it intends to do, based on good evidence.
Clinical commissioning group
Clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) are responsible for the planning and commissioning of NHS services for their local area.
Commissioning is the process that public sector organisations use to plan, pay for, and monitor services for local residents.
Cost effectiveness examines the costs of a service or treatment in relation to its benefits in order to assess whether the costs of funding a service can be justified in light of the expected benefits.
Disinvestment is a technical term for ceasing to fund – or invest in – something (a service or treatment) that was previously funded.
Equality Impact Assessment
Equality Impact Assessment (EIA) is a process designed to ensure that a policy, project or scheme does not discriminate against any disadvantaged or vulnerable people. Public organisations may be obliged by law to carry out an EIA if they are making certain kinds of funding decisions or changes to the way they deliver services.
Fairness is about treating people equally or in a way that is considered right or reasonable. Fairness may mean different things to different people in different situations. Organisations that commission services need to consider the impact of their decisions on different groups and do their best to ensure that no-one is unfairly disadvantaged.
Joint Strategic Needs Assessment
A Joint Strategic Needs Assessment (JSNA) looks at the current and future health and care needs of local populations to inform and guide the planning and commissioning (buying) of health, well-being and social care services within a local authority area.
A decision or action may be legitimate if it is based on correct or acceptable principles of reasoning; if it is considered reasonable, sensible, or valid; or if is in accordance with law. DMAT is particularly concerned with how best to make a decision that is considered reasonable and valid by those affected.
An outcome is a consequence or result. In health, it is often used to describe the health benefit or improvement achieved as a result of treatment.
In healthcare funding, prioritisation is the process of deciding which services or treatments are most important to fund from within a fixed budget that cannot fund everything.
Sometimes known as ‘population health’, public health is about the health of groups of people and not individuals. It is concerned with preventing ill health (mental as well as physical) rather than curing disease. Public health also aims to reduce so-called ‘health inequalities’ or the differences in health between different groups.
Social care refers to services and organisations providing practical or emotional support to help people lead an active and independent life (for example, older or disabled people). Social care is different from healthcare which aims to help people who are ill, although there are people who need both kinds of care.
Social (sometimes ‘societal’) values are the moral or ethical values of a particular society (in other words, what society thinks is important as a matter of principle). Examples of concepts that are impacted by such values are: the place of personal and collective or shared responsibility; the role of the family in caring; the importance of preventing or treating specific diseases. Social values reflect factors such as culture; religion; how wealthy or poor the society is; and what groups make up the population (for example, whether it is a younger or older population overall). Social values may also change over time.
Stakeholder is a term often used in policy and public sector organisations, and is used to reference a person or organisation with an interest in an organisation or activity, particularly if they will be affected by any decision (such as about funding).
A strategy is a plan for achieving goals over a relatively long period of time, including both what will be done and how.
Transparency is about being open, and also showing a willingness to demonstrate and explain what has been done and why. It is closely connected to accountability.
Also known as clinical or care pathways, treatment pathways are standard or agreed ways of managing a patient’s care over time.