There were 135 CCGs across England in 2020/21 and following a further series of mergers there were 106 in operation in 2021/22. Their purpose was to commission most of the hospital and community NHS services in the local areas for which they are responsible.
Commissioning involves deciding what services are needed for diverse local populations, and ensuring that they are provided.
CCGs were assured by NHS England, which retains responsibility for commissioning primary care services such as GP and dental services, as well as some specialised hospital services. Many GP services were also co-commissioned with CCGs when the latter were in operation.
Local commissioning responsibility has now been transferred to Integrated Care Boards as of July 2022.
NHS trusts provide hospital care to people in England. These can be acute trusts, ambulance trusts, mental health trusts or community trusts. There are currently 50 mental health trusts in England.
There are currently 42 Integrated Care Systems (ICSs) covering all of England as of July 2022. These involve local NHS organisations and councils drawing up shared proposals to improve health and care in the areas they serve. They were created to bring local health and care leaders together to plan around the long-term needs of local communities.
Sustainability and Transformation Partnerships (STPs) were the previous form of joint local planning and have evolved to become ICSs, a new form of even closer collaboration between the NHS and local councils.
NHS England currently work across seven regions, covering healthcare commissioning and delivery, and providing advice on professional leadership on finance, nursing, medical, specialised commissioning, patients and information, human resources, organisational development, assurance and delivery.
These regions are: East of England; Midlands; London; North East & Yorkshire; North West; South East; and South West.