The NHS will roll out a new centralised approach to buying energy which could help slash its energy bill nationally by up to £100 million a year, as part of a major drive to find further efficiencies and improve care.
From January, the NHS will use its buying power to purchase energy nationally, driving down costs to reinvest into frontline patient care.
There are currently 200 different energy contracts in place in trusts across England, each with varying value that have been purchased in different ways.
NHS commercial leaders worked alongside Crown Commercial Service (CCS), the biggest public procurement organisation in the UK, to develop a national approach to buying energy, which means the NHS can achieve greater value for money and find efficiencies.
Over the coming weeks, CCS will contact trusts to support them with the transition to the new way of buying energy from the specific NHS energy ‘basket’, depending on their current energy agreement.
The NHS anticipates that all existing CCS contracts will move to this new agreement between January and March 24. All other NHS trusts are asked to commit to joining the CCS NHS energy basket once their current contracts expire.
It is estimated that the first of its kind agreement could save the NHS between £60 million and £100 million a year, over the lifetime of the initial three-year agreement.
As well as bulk discounts based on consumption volume, buying energy centrally also ensures greater price stability and resilience to external events, as well as increased budget predictability for trusts.
The NHS sees about 1.6 million people a day, using energy to provide care for patients as well as cleaning an area the size of Gibraltar every day and providing 326,880 meals for patients and staff.
NHS England’s Chief Commercial Officer, Jacqui Rock, said: “The NHS takes its responsibility to the British taxpayer seriously.
“The NHS is one of the biggest commercial organisations in the country and by purchasing energy centrally the health service is using its commercial muscle power to ramp up value for money and unlock significant savings to invest into patient care”.
David Skinner, Director of Business Development & Customer Experience at Crown Commercial Service (CCS) said: “I’m delighted that NHS England and CCS are entering into a formal partnership agreement to deliver a suite of strategies and solutions for trusts.
“CCS are passionate about our commitment to our nation’s health service and working together we will bring value and savings to trusts. We very much look forward to developing our partnership with the NHS.”
Source: NHS England
Date: 2 January