About the CCP

Lord Carter of Coles

Introduction from the chair

Lord Carter of Coles

Choice, co-operation and competition in the NHS are important elements of the NHS reform programme, which puts patients at the heart of driving change in the NHS - directly through choice of service provider, and indirectly through influencing and shaping commissioning.

The benefits for patients and taxpayers of choice and competition include:

  • Improving quality and safety in service provision
  • Improving health and well being
  • Improving standards of, and reduced inequalities in, access and outcomes
  • Informed patients - with a 'voice and choice'
  • Greater confidence in the NHS
  • Better value for money.

The CCP helps support the delivery to patients and taxpayers of the benefits of competition by investigating and advising the Department of Health and Monitor on potential breaches of the Principles and Rules of Co-operation and Competition. The information on this website will, we hope, be a useful start for those interested in the role of the CCP.

What cases does the CCP undertake?

The CCP undertakes cases in four categories:

  • Merger cases
  • Conduct cases
  • Procurement dispute appeals
  • Advertising and misleading information dispute appeals.

We may also investigate non-case specific matters referred to us by either the Department of Health or by Monitor.

Our structure

The CCP consists of the Chair (Lord Carter of Coles) and a number of part-time panellists drawn from various backgrounds, including law, economics, business and healthcare. In each investigation, we make findings and recommendations that are agreed by panellists drawing on support provided by CCP staff and specialist reference groups.

Our approach

The CCP's approach is grounded in the established principles of economic and competition analysis. However, in applying these principles, the CCP ensures that it takes account of the special features of the healthcare sector, such as it being free at the point of service for patients, the not for profit nature of many organisations providing healthcare services and the help many patients need to make informed choices between service providers.

In carrying out our investigations we are committed to using fair and transparent processes that gather all of the relevant evidence and enable parties to put their case. We also work alongside a number of other regulators, including the Care Quality Commission, the Office of Fair Trading, and the Advertising Standards Authority.

Department of Health NHS Monitor