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Governance and service performance

NHS Informatics Merseyside is hosted by Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust and is owned by four NHS partner organisations.

Our partner organisations

Our NHS partner organisations currently include Liverpool Clinical Commissioning Group,  Mersey Care NHS Foundation Trust, South Sefton Clinical Commissioning Group and Southport and Formby Clinical Commissioning Group.

Each partner organisation takes several core services from NHS Informatics Merseyside and has responsibility for the strategic direction and management of the service as part of their partnership agreement.

In addition to our partner organisations, we also work closely with a range of organisations who include major acute and specialist trusts, community and mental health services, clinical commissioning groups, general practitioners, wider health and care services and professional bodies.

Our overall business plan, and monitoring the way we work to achieve our strategic objectives, is the responsibility of our Partnership Board.

Partnership Board and Operational Committee

NHS Informatics Merseyside's Partnership Board is made up of the chief officers of our partner clinical commissioning groups and the chief executives of our partner NHS trusts.

The Operational Committee is a sub-group of the Partnership Board, with representatives including partner organisation IT and finance leads.

This group is designed as a vehicle for strategic and innovative thinking, and works to develop partner internal strategies and delivery plans, and to share these among members to ensure that any opportunities for collaboration and economies of scale are identified

Maintaining service performance

To ensure NHS Informatics Merseyside continues to add value, service performance and digital capability is continually monitored and improved to drive innovation and support the shared service ethos of making exceptional service the standard. 

To assess our performance and provide assurance of the processes and systems we have in place, NHS Informatics Merseyside participates in an annual audit and assurance review, which assesses all aspects of the services we provide including core infrastructure, managed data centre, network implementation, third party support contracts, fundamental application systems, integration/ interoperability and system support.

Following the global cyber attack in May 2017, Mersey Internal Audit Agency (MIAA) introduced a review of the cyber controls in place as part of this annual audit. Out of 13 organisations across Cheshire and Merseyside, NHS Informatics Merseyside scored the highest maturity level (Level 3) for its perimeter controls and was one of two organisations to score a maturity Level 2 for its patch management controls. 

To provide assurance of the service being provided in terms of value for money, NHS Informatics Merseyside uses a Benchmarking Framework. This framework is based on industry standards and pulls together recognised principles of an excellent informatics provider across a number of areas including:

  • Financial sustainability 
  • Clinical engagement 
  • Strategic partnerships
  • Demonstration of innovation
  • Workforce development
  • Performance
  • Contribution to social value 
  • Customer feedback and successes
  • Formulation of assets
  • Accreditation standards and legislation

Within IT service provision, successfully comparing services on a like-for-like basis with another provider can be difficult to achieve due to the bespoke nature of the service and the difficulty in finding an organisation that is similar in terms of services provided, size and types of IT infrastructure in place. This is particularly evident across the healthcare sector when taking into account:

  • The varying levels and complexity of IT infrastructure in place.
  • The different sized NHS organisations and geographic locations.
  • The diverse user base and range of patient services provided.
  • The dissimilar SLAs in place, i.e. response times/targets.

These variances can influence cost and demand for services and therefore may not provide realistic comparison data. 

To demonstrate how NHS Informatics Merseyside is performing against the criteria of the Benchmarking Framework, evidence is continually gathered across all areas on an on-going basis. This process has been ratified externally.