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NHS Confederation responds to new partnership funding in Greater Manchester

Rob Webster, chief executive of the NHS Confederation responded to the discussions in Greater Manchester around a new partnership for health and social care. 

“On the day when the 2015 Challenge partnership has published “Our prescription for the election” which sets out the need to give local areas the freedom to transform care, it is great to see an example where a local health system is looking to take bold action. We will be following this work with interest. In particular, we will be looking to support all of our members in their efforts to transform health and care and understand how to work with local people on shared priorities.

“If we are to tackle the challenges that face the health and care system then local organisations will need to work in different ways. Leaders need to look beyond the boundaries of their individual organisations, instead developing shared priorities for their area and working collaboratively with other organisations to improve the health outcomes of their local community. The focus of politicians and arms length bodies must be to create the right environment to allow this sort of approach, offering support and looking to remove any barriers to new ways of working which improve patient care. 

“What this example does demonstrate is the role CCGs are playing, working with partners in local government to drive improvements in care. It’s also positive that providers of healthcare have been engaged in this work. It’s vital that all sorts of providers, including community, mental health, acute, and ambulance, are fully involved in these plans. 

“We are pleased to see that the changes in Manchester are being locally driven, rather than a centrally imposed initiative. Manchester’s plan is an example of changes resulting from good partnership working and strong relationships between health and care leaders, who are showing they can put the interest of the local population ahead of their own organisations. 

“All political parties need to learn a lesson from this – as we set out in the 2015 Challenge, what’s needed is the space and stability to let these cultures develop. That means avoiding another top down reorganisation of structure at all costs. This model won’t be right for all parts of England – local areas need the freedom to develop solutions which are right for their individual situation.”

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