Thousands of pounds have been allocated to help patients get involved with the healthcare sector.
Through the Big Lottery Fund, NHS England and the National Lottery have awarded £450,000 to the Building Health Partnerships programme, which will help 10 areas build partnerships between the healthcare sector, charities and local people.
Patients in the selected areas will have a say on the design of the services they use.
NHS England director of system transformation Michael MacDonnell said: ‘It’s important we work as closely as we can with a variety of community groups to ensure we get the richest input into designing services.
‘The voices and views of a range of people from different backgrounds and circumstances can really make a difference to the solutions we find.’
The programme ran across eight STP areas between April 2017 and June 2018, and will now expand to another 10 areas.
The Building Health Partnerships programme will support the 10 areas to develop a ‘champions’ network’, a pool for commissioners and community representatives to share ideas to make sure patients are at the heart of STPs and ICSs’ plans.
There will be two cohorts of the programme. The first five STP/ICS selected for the first one are:
- Frimley Health and Care
- Healthier Lancashire and South Cumbria
- North Cumbria
- Nottingham and Nottinghamshire
- West Yorkshire and Harrogate Health and Care Partnership
The next cohort of STPs/ICSs is yet to be announced.
Dr Sakthi Karunanithi, Lancashire County Council Director for Public Health and Wellbeing, said: ‘The support Lancashire and South Cumbria will receive from the Building Health Partnerships programme will help us to do this by bringing communities and health care professionals together.’
Local collaboration was particularly valuable in the case of Mid and South Essex STP, one of the first areas to join the programme. After procuring lung testing equipment for their area, the partnership managed to spot ‘early indicators of respiratory illness in 20% of those tested’ at local events and clinics.
Nottingham and Nottinghamshire told Healthcare Leader their programme will focus ‘on urgent and emergency care working with the voluntary, community and social enterprise sector’ and the STP partners to expand their focus on delayed transfers of care.