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Difficult Decisions - Help us to Prioritise and Align Clinical Policies

Altogether the six CCGs in Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent commission over 800 different services and treatments, but availability of these varies across the area.

Together they have been spending around £2 million more per week than they receive, and that means some difficult decisions now need to be made.

That is why an engagement exercise took place for people to share their experiences of five different treatments. The CCGs wanted to understand the real impact these treatments have on people’s lives before deciding how they should be provided across Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent in the future.

The five areas are:


Assisted conception

Hearing loss in adults

Removal of excess skin following significant weight loss

Breast augmentation and reconstruction

Male and female sterilisation

The engagement exercise launched in January 2020 and ended 1 March 2020.

Information paper for the engagement exercise (January to March 2020):

  • Download and read this information paper, which explains the background to the five areas and why these difficult decisions need to be made.
  • View and download this Easy Read version of the public document

Next steps

The experiences and information collated during the engagement period is being independently analysed – this includes feedback from the survey, ‘be a commissioner’ events and information sent from various groups and networks.

This information will help the CCGs create a short list of viable options for access to these treatments across Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent, following which a formal consultation will then be held to gather feedback on these options.

As a result of the Coronavirus outbreak, this engagement work has been paused and the CCGs cannot give an estimate of when this work will continue. The full statement from the CCGs can be read here.