A new year brings new ways of working

In a new blog, Dr David Crichton, Chair, Doncaster Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), Dr Rupert Suckling, Director of Public Health and Damian Allen, Director of People at Doncaster Council describe how a new joint commissioning strategy will help improve the health and wellbeing of thousands of people in Doncaster in a quest to work much more closely together with patients and the people of Doncaster.

Seeing the New Year in is a good time for many. It’s a time to reflect on the year gone by – the good and where we could have done better, but also a time to think about the year ahead and building on what we have achieved so far.

In Doncaster, 2018 was a great year for health and social care services. To name a few, we launched the Doncaster Integrated Care Record, made progress on our local transformation plan to improve the mental health and wellbeing of children and young people in Doncaster and took vital steps to produce an all age learning disability and autism plan.

However, we know there is more work to do and we are committed to strengthening our work to improve people’s health and wellbeing in Doncaster.

One of the key things that we will be working on over the coming year is how Doncaster CCG and Doncaster Council will work closely together to provide a range of health and social care services to reduce duplication and ultimately make it easier for members of the public to access health and care services across the borough.

Today, we are delighted to launch a Doncaster wide consultation on our thinking so far behind the first ever joint health and social care commissioning strategy, which aligns with many national health and care priorities which can be found in the NHS Long Term Plan

Based on progress made in Doncaster, working with members of the public and community groups, we know we need to scope, plan and deliver services based around the person as opposed to a place or setting, such as a hospital. This means that we can ensure that people are cared for based on their individual needs to maximise independence, enabling them to take more control over their own health.

With this in mind, the joint health and care commissioning strategy will focus around three broad life stages – starting well, living well and ageing well. This will help us to ensure services are available for everyone, based on their health and care needs, at different stages in their lives.

As a result of our work so far with local people, we have developed a number of intentions that will steer our work over the next two years. We want to:

  • Work closely with local communities to support them to manage aspects of their health and wellbeing, including physical and mental health
  • Ensure co-ordinated access to services when they are needed, ensuring they are accessible and matched to people’s level of need
  • Develop a more holistic approach to the delivery of care – ensuring all health and care needs of individuals and their families are considered
  • Develop care for people when they are in crisis – making it easier to access health and care services when they need them the most
  • Enhance support for people with complex needs – when it is identified that an individual has complex needs, social, physical or mental health issues, organisations will work together to further understand patient needs and wrap care around them.

To bring this vision to life, we want to know what you think. All you need to do is read a short piece on how we want to work with local people to improve health and care services in Doncaster and answer four short questions to help shape the final strategy that will be published in the coming months.

We want as many people as possible to take part in this survey – both people that access health and care services on a regular basis and those that don’t, so please do take the time to find out more about our plan to work with you and support you to be as healthy as possible. Please complete the survey by Friday 15 February 2019.

An easy read version of the vision is also available and can be accessed here.

If you’d rather find out more about how our joint plan will help improve the lives of people in Doncaster, you can attend a number of events that will take place in January and February across the borough. These dates have not yet been confirmed but will be led by Healthwatch Doncaster in partnership with both Doncaster CCG and Doncaster Council. We will share details of these events in the coming weeks on Facebook and Twitter.

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