The NHS Spend Comparison Service (SCS) was commissioned by NHS Improvement and is provided by NHS Digital on behalf of providers. It provides users with price benchmarking and spend analysis of procurement data for all NHS trusts within NHS England.
All NHS trusts (acute, specialists, mental health, community and ambulance) are required to upload their purchase order and accounts payable data each to NHS Digital Strategic Data Collections Service (SDCS). Purchase Order data is collected on a weekly basis and Account Payable data is collected monthly.
The raw trust data is then aggregated and cleansed by NHS Digital, and this aggregate database then forms the foundation of the different visualisations and analysis found within the SCS analytics dashboards.
The service enables users to view the underlying data within several different formats, allowing for different methods of analysis, including benchmarking prices paid for goods and services, identifying alternative suppliers and products that may offer better value, as well as identifying inflation, possible sources of alternative stock, and insight into and trends within supply markets. Since its launch, providers have consistently evidenced real life cost savings from the use of SCS. Also included within the service is the GIRFT clinical classification that allows providers to analyse their procurement data by medical and surgical specialty, procedure, and product classification.