Like other NHS Boards across Scotland, NHS Tayside and its partners are facing significant challenges, including caring for an increasing older population, growing demand for all services, workforce challenges that are impacting upon current models of care and continuing pressures on public finances.
In response to these challenges, NHS Tayside and the three Health and Social Care Partnerships are developing an Integrated Clinical Strategy, guided by national policy, to reflect the changing population needs and outlining service intentions with key themes for change over the next five to ten years. The strategy will set out a collective vision of how high quality, innovative and sustainable clinical services will be delivered.
A report was approved by Tayside NHS Board in December 2017 entitled “An Integrated Clinical Strategy for Tayside: Staging Report” outlined the nine key strategic priorities and service changes currently in focus across Tayside to achieve affordable and cohesive ‘whole system’ models of care.
The Integrated Clinical Strategy work has been supported by a Clinical Leadership Team which has been working with clinical teams and integrated community services to build a picture of how clinical services are gearing up to meet the ever increasing demand for health and social care services.
The Clinical Leadership Team has undertaken extensive engagement with clinical community and partners and over 800 participants voiced their views on how change should be achieved and how they felt they could support and inform new ways of working. These views are helping to build the Strategy.
Key themes arising from the information gathered have also enabled the development of a set of principles that guide how new services can be built in collaboration, reflect whole system working and be configured and delivered to best effect.
Here are the thoughts of Chris Schofield, Clincial Lead for Diabetes and Endocrinology, on the need for an integrated clinical strategy.
“The burden that chronic disease, such as diabetes, place on people is not insignificant. However, they are not defined by their diseases. Healthcare providers need to recognise the complex nature of people’s lives and the differing pressures they face.
“The Integrated Clinical Strategy is key to this and places the patient at the centre of their healthcare. In the diabetes service we are developing models of care in line with the strategy which empower patients allowing the right person to access the right service in a timely fashion. It is incumbent on us all to break with old traditions of ‘primary’ and ‘secondary’ care to build sustainable, high quality, person centred care for the future.”
The ICS Programme is progressing its work around future configuration of services, and next steps include building our options and opportunities with our clinical teams and developing our programme in partnership with colleagues from the Transformation Programme. Public engagement events are also being planned to share the work of the Programme.