Safeguarding commissioning assurance in the NHS

NHS safeguarding assurance

The purpose of the Safeguarding Accountability and Assurance Framework is to set out clearly the safeguarding roles and responsibilities of all individuals working in providers of NHS funded care settings and NHS commissioning organisations. The Framework aims to:

This framework aims to provide guidance and minimum standards but should not be seen as constraining the development of effective local safeguarding practice and arrangements in line with the underlying legal duties. The responsibilities for safeguarding form part of the core functions for each organisation and must therefore be discharged within agreed baseline funding.

The safeguarding commissioning assurance toolkit

In August 2019, the National Safeguarding Steering Group (NSSG) tasked NHS Safeguarding to co-create a Clinical Commissioning Group/Integrated Care System assurance process relating to the statutory and mandated functions of safeguarding across the NHS commissioning landscape. It was agreed by regional safeguarding leads that the commissioning assurance process needs a single toolkit which might act as a catalyst for commissioning conversations and quality improvement plans.

Supported by the pledge of digitally enabled services in the NHS Long Term Plan, the safeguarding commissioning assurance toolkit is digitally enabled to improve safeguarding outcomes. It provides assurance on 11 indicators that are aligned to the Safeguarding Accountability Assurance Framework (SAAF) on key areas:

The projected timeline for rollout of this key safeguarding assurance process will likely be April 2021.