The HSJ have reported that there will be a radical change in the way that health and care will be delivered in London, since providers will now need permission to reverse changes made in the wake of Covid-19.
The changes will come in three “likely” phases, with the first two phases as “action programmes” lasting 12 to 15 months and looking at dealing with “immediate covid, non-covid and elective need”, and “transition” when the move to new configurations is evaluated and public consent is sought. The final new system is expected to be in place from November 2021.
The programme includes a permanent increase in ICU capacity, with centralisation of specialised services. The plans from NHSE/I’s London office also say leaders should:
- Plan for elective waiting times to be measured at integrated care system level, rather than trust level
- Accept “a different kind of risk appetite than the one we are used to”
- Expect decisions from the centre on the location of cancer, paediatric, renal, cardiac, and neurosurgical services
- Transform to a “provider system able to be commissioned and funded on a population health basis”
- Work towards “a radical shift away from hospital care”
- Expect “governance and regulatory landscape implications” plus “streamlined decision-making”.
The ICS is the primary level at which the new health and care system will be designed and delivered, and includes a regional team for setting the conditions for ICS success.
Liaison Workforce’s Managing Director, Judith Shaw, said: “It is interesting to see how the NHSE/I is looking to transform NHS services in the capital in the aftermath of Covid-19, and utilising the lessons learned in dealing with the pandemic to establish a new normal for health care in the UK. We will wait to see if this is rolled out consistently across England, and what trust plans are throughout this process to provide new ways of working for support staff in the coming months.”
For further information, please see the HSJ website.