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Coalition of health bodies demand NHS vision

An influential coalition of health organisations has published a manifesto for the future of health and care and called on politicians to act.

At the toughest time health and care services have known for a generation, the 2015 Challenge Manifesto brings together 21 major bodies in an unprecedented demand for action.

It sets out an achievable vision of a sustainable health and care service and makes 15 solid ‘asks’ to deliver health and care services for the future.

The NHS Confederation, a leading member of the coalition, also condemned the ‘summer of silence’ of the political parties on the challenges facing health and social care.

The coalition’s priorities for health and care include:

– developing services that are designed to meet 21st Century needs of people with ongoing issues, especially  older people, those with long term conditions and children with disabilities.

– health and social care would work together as one joined up system with care closer to home.

– people’s care would be transformed with a revolution in the way we use technology and data.

– supported self care would be the norm for millions of people and individuals would shape the care they needed, alongside skilled medical and care professionals.

– sustainable hospitals will increasingly work together, supporting a range of care in local communities, alongside larger specialist centres that consolidate expertise and deliver world class innovation and outcomes.

– the right services will be available seven days a week to support urgent and emergency care.

Rob Webster, chief executive of the NHS Confederation, said: “We have had a summer of silence, punctuated by announcements on parking, contracting and hospital food.

“These are important issues but none of them tackle the fundamental challenges. Today, we have set out a clear vision of a future health service which is better for patients and is sustainable. We look to politicians of all parties for honesty, courage and substance between now and the General Election.”

The 2015 Challenge Manifesto: a time for action – sets out the absolute ‘must dos’ that the political parties need to address when shaping their own party manifestos in the run-up to next year’s General Election.

It describes a clear vision of where the health and care service should be heading, and identifies the vital elements which the political parties need to cover in setting out their own brand of proposed solution.

The 15 ‘asks’ are:

1.) a government-wide approach to keeping people well

2.) no top-down reorganisations

3.) new models of care that are supported politically at a national and local level

4.) politicians playing a leadership role in ensuring debates about change focus constructively on the implications for people’s health and wellbeing

5.) flexibility for providers on new organisational models with a clarified policy on provider futures and the FT pipeline

6.) a national sector led programme to support self care at scale

7.) workforce reforms that value staff and secure the workforce of the future

8.) government must build consensus around the expectations on the health and care workforce to provide seven-day services and providing support to meet these expectations

9.) genuine parity of esteem for mental health

10.) local leaders driving change within a national framework, including simplified performance regimes

11.) enabling locally led deployment of new technologies, coordinated information systems and cutting edge research at pace and scale

12.) longer term settlements for health and care that support service change, with adequate funding to meet demand across health and care

13.) payment system reform – to incentivise new models of care

14.) a non-recurrent £2bn fund to support change for at least two years over and above this

15.) political accountability for decisions on funding – recognising that health and care cannot absorb current pressures and deliver everything we currently do without more funding.

Dame Gill Morgan, independent chair of the coalition of leading organisations, said: “This document encapsulates the views of organisations representing patients, doctors, nurses, therapists, leading charities, local government and NHS managers.

“The evidence for change that is required is unarguable. The asks of the political parties are agreed and sensible. We now need the political parties to listen to what the experts are saying about the future, if they are to set manifestos that safeguard the future of the NHS.”

The 21 organisations signed up to the 2015 Challenge include the NHS Confederation, Academy of Medical Royal Colleges, Foundation Trust Network, Local Government Association, Royal College of GPs, Royal College of Physicians, College of Emergency Medicine, Association of Directors of Public Health, Royal College of Nursing and the Association of Directors of Adult Social Care.

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One Response to “Coalition of health bodies demand NHS vision”

  1. Malcolm Morrison says:

    ‘Ask’ No. 15 is, perhaps, the most important.

    Politicians MUST put aside their party differences and address the real crisis that is facing the NHS. DEMAND is almost limitless – due to an ageing population and the modern treatments that are available, but expensive. SUPPLY is limited by the budget – decided by politicains.

    Where demand exceeds supply, there are only two solutions – increase supply or reduce demand, or a mixture of both. These are POLITICAL (not medical) decisions; so politicians (of ALL parties) must face up to them – or ‘face the music’!

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