ACG® System Calibrated for UK

NHS Central Southern (now NHS South, Central and West) Commissioning Support Unit and Sollis have jointly announced that the outputs of the recalibration efforts of the ACG System undertaken with Johns Hopkins University will be made available to all users of the Adjusted Clinical Groups® (ACG) within the UK National Health Service free of charge. The announcement was made at the National ACG System User Group on 27 March 2014.

The joint effort, which represents a collaboration between the National Health Service, academia and the commercial sector, recalibrated the predictive models within the ACG System and developed a new predictive model to calculate a person’s risk of an emergency admission in the coming year. The output of the exercise has seen an improvement in the performance of the predictive models and takes into account the risk factors that exist within the UK population.

The ACG System is recognised as providing the most comprehensive method of risk stratification in the NHS. Central Southern CSU’s expertise in the field is already helping 210 GP practices across 14 clinical commissioning groups to better understand the needs of their populations, identify patients who would most benefit from clinical intervention and find fairer, more equitable ways to allocate resources. The tool enables GPs to flag up patients who would be suitable for particular programmes of care – something which is recognised as being increasingly important for the management of long term conditions, in addition to identifying the highest risk patients. Such insight has become an integral part of care co-ordination in Berkshire, enabling GPs to commission alternatives to hospital care.

Nigel Slone, Managing Director, Sollis said: “The recalibration exercise is the result of a joint investment between three organisations totally committed to improving healthcare. It demonstrates the very best in collaborative venture. We at Sollis are proud of the investment we have made in helping to deliver an intelligence base that will hopefully assist healthcare professionals to improve patient outcomes whilst reducing costs. It is important that the new model should be made as widely available as possible.”

As a result of the ACG System work, Alan Thompson and Chris Morris, both of Central Southern CSU’s Health Intelligence and Analytics team, have been invited to speak at the 2014 JHU International ACG User Conference, to be held April 27-30, in Seattle, Washington. The biannual conference is attended by ACG System users from more than 12 countries. Chris will be speaking alongside Steve Sutch from Johns Hopkins University about the work they undertook to recalibrate the predictive models within the ACG System and Alan will provide a brief history of the use of the ACG System within Central Southern CSU and the benefits which clinical and commissioning staff are gaining from their use of the ACG System to Central Southern’s customers.

Alan Thompson said: “Both Chris and I are delighted to have been invited to speak at the JHU International ACG User Conference and to be able to share the work that Central Southern has been involved with over the last year. The work supports both GPs in the management of individual patients and CCGs in gaining a fuller understanding of the health needs of their local populations to inform commissioning decisions.”

He added “I’m particularly delighted for Chris, who along with other staff from Central Southern’s Health Intelligence and Analytics Team are using information from the ACG System to undertake new and innovative types of analysis – this has not been possible to do before; work that I’m sure other NHS organisations will want to replicate in the future and work that I’m sure will be of interest to the international community.”

Using ACG System patient profiling, based on the demographic, diagnostic and pharmacy data of every patient, GPs can better understand the patterns of multi-morbidity within their practice and CCG populations. As well as identifying the top 1% highest risk patients, many practices and CCGs are now using Central Southern’s ACG expertise to gain a better understanding of the needs of the 2-5% patient cohort, in order to commission appropriate alternatives to hospital care.

John Wilderspin, Managing Director at Central Southern CSU said: “GPs and CCGs need high quality risk stratification information to help them manage their individual patients. By working with Sollis and Johns Hopkins University, not only have we optimised the performance of the existing predictive models, we have developed a new model in response to a key priority for the NHS and developed the skills to be able to develop new models as new requirements emerge. We’re pleased that Sollis agree with us that the investment we have made should benefit not only Central Southern CSU but other NHS users of the ACG System.”

Notes to editors

NHS Central Southern Commissioning Support Unit is one of the largest CSUs in the country. The organisation currently supports 14 of the most ambitious and driven clinical commissioning groups in England. We provide the support, expertise and insight that’s needed to match the determination of our clients: the people who define, structure and ultimately provide healthcare for over 3.7 million people.

Sollis is a software supplier and integrator serving the needs of the NHS. Sollis specialise in the delivery of analytics and information to support healthcare commissioning. Their commissioning intelligence solutions are currently used in a number of CCGs and CSUs across the country. Founded in 1994 they have just celebrated twenty years of delivering insight from data. Sollis systems and professional services put clinical commissioners in control.

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For more information

Sollis: Graham Head, Chief Information Officer on 01372 847510