This site is intended for health professionals only

Healthcare leaders must ‘widen the tent’ in consulting on regional NHS plans, says NHS England


15 December 2016

Share this story:
Twitter
LinkedIn

NHS England has told NHS managers to engage with more GPs following the release of regional plans designed to transform the healthcare system.

A report to the NHS England board updating them on the plans has highlighted the need to consult with clinicians, including GPs, on the changes proposed.

The document adds that engagement needs to happen on a local level, with primary care providers and CCGs, as well as across regional boundaries and include medical Royal Colleges, where specialist advice is needed.

NHS England has told NHS managers to engage with more GPs following the release of regional plans designed to transform the healthcare system.

A report to the NHS England board updating them on the plans has highlighted the need to consult with clinicians, including GPs, on the changes proposed.

The document adds that engagement needs to happen on a local level, with primary care providers and CCGs, as well as across regional boundaries and include medical Royal Colleges, where specialist advice is needed.

NHS England is working with health and social care managers in each region to help them developed tailored engagement plans.

The report said: “They now also need to do more to engage clinicians—including frontline GPs — and all our staff in the next phase and to involve them fully in preparing to lead changes to the way we design our services to look after patients.”

Speaking to the NHS England board today, Matthew Swindells, national director for operations and information said leaders in each area “need to widen the tent”.

He said: “As we move from the proposal phase that we’re in at the moment into turning these into plans to be implemented, it’s important that the local STPs need to widen the tent of the conversation.”

While he added that every area has consulted on changes to some extent, “we need to create a standardised feeling that this is part of a joint engagement in how we take the NHS forward over the next four years”.

Mr Swindells said he expects more people to be engaged with the plans by January after the contracting period has ended.

The document submitted to the board said that “formal consultation” will be necessary in “some cases”.

But Mr Swindells said nothing in the plans “takes away the statutory obligation to consult over a major service change”.

He said: “What it ought to do is ensure that when we do that consultation it’s set in a broader strategic framework, so you understand why this thing – because it’s part of a bigger story rather than just being the element on it’s own.”

Professor Jane Cummings, chief nursing officer, added that the patient and public engagement team has worked with health and social care leaders across the country.

She said there are plans to “provide additional bespoke support” about engagement for each region.

Twitter
LinkedIn