Under the Health and Social Care Act 2012, the NHS Commissioning Board (NHS CB) and clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) have a duty to ‘promote’ and ‘encourage’ integration of care. A recurring theme, highlighted by NHS Future Forum, has been the need for a compelling narrative for integrated care so that the public and professionals share a common and meaningful understanding of it. The importance of this has been captured in the new NHS Constitution (currently out for consultation).
The Mandate for the NHS CB includes an objective for us to drive better integration of care, care which is centred around the whole person; co-ordinated around the needs of patients, families and carers and feels more ‘joined up’ to the individual, including at ‘transitions’. An example is at the interface between services commissioned by the NHS CB and CCGs respectively.
The NHS CB has commissioned National Voices, the national coalition of health and social care charities and its members, to develop a Narrative for integrated care from the perspective of the patient and service user. We have done so in partnership with the Local Government Association supported by the Department of Health and Monitor. The purpose is to help ensure a shared understanding of what good person-centred, co-ordinated (‘integrated’) care looks like for an individual, using language that everyone can identify with.
We are confident that the Narrative for person-centred, coordinated (‘integrated’) care captures this because:
- the individual (‘I’) statements, initially set out in National Voices’ contribution to the Future Forum, were developed further through a national workshop of local system leaders and service users in September 2012.
- a similar set of statements from the ‘Making it Real’ initiative were then incorporated, also having been co-produced with social care service users.
National Voices, the NHS CB and our key partners above are now sharing the Narrative as widely as we can via our websites, newsletters and bulletins. This is your opportunity to review the draft Narrative and think how it might inform your own work locally. National Voices welcome your feedback to help them further develop the draft Narrative to support the work of all health and care professionals in delivering person-centred, co-ordinated care.
Please let us have your comments and responses to the Narrative by 28 February 2013. Thank you.