What does the Long Term Plan mean for people in West Yorkshire and Harrogate?

Engagement colleagues are working with Healthwatch partners to have conversations with people and get their views on the development of the Partnership’s five year plan in response to the NHS Long Term Plan. The Partnership’s plan will set out our ambitions for the next five years and also identify any work needed to align to the NHS Long Term Plan. It will build on our work to date and will be a refresh of our ‘Next Steps to Better Health and Care for Everyone'.

Healthwatch have been commissioned by NHS England to coordinate and support this work.

Two surveys are now available to complete via your local Healthwatch, who are also co-ordinating two focus groups/events. These will take place in our six local areas (Bradford District and Craven; Calderdale, Harrogate, Kirklees, Leeds and Wakefield) and will focus on ‘personalisation’ and ‘digitalisation’ and what this means to people. Other themes will also be discussed. Healthwatch will submit a report to NHS England at the end of June, with findings from the survey and focus groups/events. A copy of the report will be made available on local Healthwatch websites and on the Partnership website once complete.

This important work will help us to identify future areas of engagement at a local and West Yorkshire and Harrogate level and will complement the work already taking place, as set out in our engagement and consultation mapping work. You can read last year’s publication here and an updated version will be available soon. We will continue to keep you updated as the work develops.

Proposals for possible changes to legislation

NHS England are inviting patients, NHS staff, partner organisations and interested members of the public to give their views on potential proposals for changing current primary legislation relating to the NHS. The success of the NHS Long Term Plan depends on the collective will to change the NHS for the better and improve services for everyone working in them and using them. Local NHS bodies need to be free to work together with partners, including local authorities, to plan and provide care around patients, not services or institutions, and the same is also true for our national organisations.

It’s possible to implement the NHS Long Term Plan without primary legislation. But legislative change could make implementation easier and faster. Local NHS bodies need to be better able to work together to redesign care around patients, and the same is also true for the national bodies. And the rules and processes for procurement, pricing and mergers create unnecessary bureaucracy that gets in the way of enabling integration of care.

NHS England have outlined eight groups of suggested legislative changes in the NHS Long Term Plan and are now setting out further detail. It is based on what they’ve heard from patients, clinicians, NHS leaders and partner organisations, as well as national professional and representative bodies, and it is intended to better enable NHS organisations to work collectively. These proposals are designed to solve specific practical problems that the NHS faces and avoid creating operational distraction. You can take part and ensure your voice is heard by completing the short survey which is available online at: https://www.engage.england.nhs.uk/survey/nhs-long-term-plan-legislation/.

NHS England want as many people as possible to give their views and intend to share the feedback with the Parliamentary Health and Social Care Select Committee to inform their inquiries. Views are invited by 25 April 2019.

About the Long Term Plan

The Long Term Plan sets out some of the ways that we want to improve care for people over the next ten years; including making sure everyone gets the best start in life; reducing stillbirths and mother and child deaths during birth by 50%; taking further action on childhood obesity; increasing funding for children and young people’s mental health; bringing down waiting times for autism assessments. It also includes the importance of delivering world-class care for major health problems;  preventing 100,000 heart attacks, strokes and dementia cases; investing in spotting and treating lung conditions early to prevent 80,000 stays in hospital and delivering community-based physical and mental health care for 370,000 people with severe mental illness a year by 2023/24.

LTPconsultation.jpgSupporting people to age well and increasing funding for primary and community care by at least £4.5bn; coordinating care better and helping more people to live independently at home for longer are also highlighted in the Plan alongside improving the recognition of carers and support they receive and making further progress on care for people with dementia.

The Plan also sets out how we can overcome the challenges that the NHS faces, such as staff shortages and growing demand for services, by doing things differently and giving people more control over their own health and care whilst preventing illness and tackling health inequalities.

The plan also recognises the importance of the NHS workforce, training and recruiting more professionals – including thousands more clinical placements for undergraduate nurses, hundreds more medical school places, and more routes into the NHS such as apprenticeships. We will also make the NHS a better place to work, so more staff stay in the NHS and feel able to make better use of their skills and experience for patients. Digital technology is also high on the agenda. We will keep you updated on what’s next in terms of workforce and public engagement over the coming weeks. This means that over the next few months, whether you are NHS staff, a patient or a member of the public, you will have the opportunity to help shape what the NHS Long Term Plan means for your area, and how the services you use or work in need to change and improve.

The Equality and Health Inequalities Impact Assessment (EHIA) explains how NHS England has considered and addressed these ‘equality duties’ in developing the NHS Long Term Plan. This EHIA has assisted, and will assist, decision-makers to make informed decisions about the NHS Long Term Plan and these legal obligations.

We will also keep you updated on the publication of the Adult Social Care Green Paper when we know more.