The next step in Plymouth’s radical approach to health and care services has been given the greenlight by one of the main partners.
Plymouth City Council’s Cabinet has agreed the Integrated Commissioning Strategies for the next five years, which join together the Council and NHS Northern, Eastern and Western Clinical Commissioning Group (NEW Devon CCG)’s health and care budgets.
Under the banner of ‘One System, One Budget’, the four commissioning strategies have been signed off by the Council and will also need to be agreed with NEW Devon CCG Board and South Hams and West Devon councils. The four strategies cover:
- Wellbeing – People and communities will be well, stay well, and recover well. This strategy supports healthy and happy communities by putting health and wellbeing at the heart of everything we do.
- Enhanced and Specialised Care – A system that consists of quality specialist health and care services that promotes choice, independence, dignity and respect.
- Children and Young People – Provide the best start to life for all children from pregnancy to school age, and the right support at the right time for vulnerable children and young people.
- Community – Targets the services that support people to maintain their independence in their own home within their own community.
The move follows the recent integration of health and adult social care services in the city, with the transfer of the Council’s Adult Social Care staff across to Plymouth Community Healthcare on 1 April 2015.
Councillor Ian Tuffin, Cabinet Member for Health and Adult Social Care for Plymouth City Council, said: “The integration of adult social care in Plymouth with local health services was just the start of our new joined up way of working. We want to make sure people get the right care, in the right place at the right time, so these new strategies are the next step on this journey.”
Councillor Sue McDonald, Cabinet Member for Children, Young People and Public Health for Plymouth City Council, said: “A new, co-operative approach will be taken to providing services for children and young people, working with partners to ensure there is early help for children and their families that need support. The aim will be to provide support where it is needed, not just for children and young people, but their families and carers as well.
“The focus will be on early help and prevention, with nurseries, child-minders, schools and colleges, plus community and voluntary groups as these all work directly with children and young people.
“The aim is to ensure health and care services are tailored to the needs of the individual, whatever their age, and also to make sure people have the information they need to make healthier lifestyle choices.”
Dr Paul Hardy, a GP in Plymouth and a clinical chair of NHS NEW Devon CCG, said: “Integration is about making the health and social care system less complicated and more transparent, so that we can give better, more joined-up care to our patients.
“A person’s health needs can change on a daily basis, so we need to be flexible and resilient.
“An integrated approach means that we can get people the right care when they need it and we can minimise delays and confusion. All of this benefits the patient.
“The strategies set out how we are going to achieve this over the next five years and it is good news that these have been supported by the Council Cabinet, as it means we can move forward with this important work.”
Steve Waite, Chief Executive of Plymouth Community Healthcare, said: “Delivering a truly integrated health and social care service has long been an ambition for the City. Plymouth community healthcare is delighted to be playing such a pivotal role in enabling this ambition to become a reality. Placing the needs of people in receipt of our services as the true focus for delivery of an integrated system of health and social care, support and advice will shape how we deliver services and support the communities we serve.”
Now that Cabinet have approved the strategies, they will also need to be agreed with NEW Devon CCG’s Governing Body.
You can read the full draft strategy here