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17 January 2018updated 09 Sep 2021 5:54pm

Partnerships in a new era of excellence

Collaboration between the supply chain and frontline clinical staff is key to creating better healthcare infrastructure in the UK.

By Stephen O’Callaghan

The NHS is facing more pressure than ever before; by 2030 it is estimated that there will be around 15m people in the United Kingdom over the age of 651. Whilst we can be proud of the role that industry has played in increasing life expectancy, this brings both opportunities and challenges to continue to improve patient outcomes and to increase patient satisfaction. A growing and ageing population also continues to add to the financial challenges facing our healthcare system, and with an estimated funding gap of around £30bn by 20202, the NHS also needs to find ways to reduce the total cost of care.

Clearly, there is no doubt that hospitals and healthcare providers are under increasing pressure to do more with less. The NHS Five Year Forward View3 published in October 2014, along with recent reports led by Lord Carter4 and Professor Briggs5, highlight the challenges of meeting the increasing demands of an ageing population and make a number of recommendations that aim to help the NHS improve efficiency and quality of care for patients, whilst reducing costs.

Today, we believe that industry can play a key role in shaping the future healthcare landscape by partnering with healthcare systems to co-create solutions that deliver value to healthcare providers and improve satisfaction for patients.

We created Johnson & Johnson Managed Services, part of Johnson & Johnson Finance Limited, with these needs in mind. We have developed a unique programme and offer capabilities to help hospitals and healthcare providers achieve their aims of improving outcomes, increasing patient satisfaction whilst reducing the cost of care delivery. An example of exactly how this works was recently revealed when we announced a new 15-year partnership to deliver an Orthopaedics Centre of Excellence with Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust.

As part of the managed services agreement, the orthopaedics centre at Guy’s Hospital is being expanded and redeveloped, giving more patients access to services through the development of additional operating theatres within the first three years. This centre of excellence will provide a hub for education and training, and offer a dedicated space to facilitate cutting-edge research to improve clinical outcomes for patients. We are also responsible for streamlining the supply chain through a managed service agreement for the procurement of devices, surgical instruments and implants required for orthopaedic surgery, working to improve efficiency and reduce costs for the trust.

This partnership is the first of its kind that we’ve developed within Johnson & Johnson, both in the UK and globally, and was created through our insight that the changing healthcare landscape in the UK requires a new type of partnership between industry and healthcare providers. It reflects our joint commitment to improving the future of healthcare through innovation and collaboration and is designed to improve the standard of care for orthopaedic patients. What’s really exciting is that this new business model will allow us to take a leading role in shaping the healthcare environment in the UK.

Managed services are already used across the NHS and are designed to make the best use of external expertise and allow healthcare providers to focus on delivering quality care. The role of Johnson & Johnson Managed Services in this partnership is to leverage our core organisational capabilities in logistical and operational management to allow clinicians within the Trust to focus on surgical excellence, improving patient experience and clinical outcomes, while reducing cost.

We’re extremely proud of this collaboration which we have developed alongside our partners at Guy’s and St Thomas’. It is designed to eliminate inefficiencies which will deliver significant value back to our customers, and will improve the overall experience for patients. This is just the beginning of a new business model that will bring significant benefits to the healthcare community we serve.

Peter Earnshaw, clinical director of surgery at Guy’s and St Thomas’, outlines how this collaboration will benefit patients and clinicians alike.  “As we redesign patient pathways and introduce innovative new technology, it allows us to improve the overall experience of patients having surgery in our institution,” he commented. “The Johnson & Johnson Managed Services partnership will further increase the time that frontline clinicians can focus on patient care and enable us to identify opportunities to improve the supply chain. Through the development of new operating theatres, it will also increase capacity so that we can treat more patients more quickly and will give our clinical teams opportunities to be at the forefront of new developments in orthopaedic care.”

1Mid-2016 Population Estimates UK Office for National Statistics, 2017
4Operational productivity and performance in English NHS acute hospitals: Unwarranted variations, Lord Carter (2016).
5Briggs, T. (2014) Getting It Right First Time: Improving the Quality of Orthopaedic Care within the National Health Service in England.

Stephen O’Callaghan is senior director of Johnson & Johnson Managed Services, GB & Ireland.

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