Where is Better Local Care happening?
At first only three areas were selected to form the partnership – Gosport, East Hampshire and South West New Forest covering 27 GP practices and 220,000 patients. The project saw nurses, therapists, mental health and learning disability staff, combine with GP practices to provide integrated care tailored to meet the needs to the local community.
Following the success of the first three areas, further areas have joined. Currently we have 12 areas involved in Better Local Care:
- North Hants
- Andover and surrounding area
- Winchester and surrounding area
- East Hampshire
- Eastleigh and district
- Havant, Hayling and Emsworth
- Totton, Hythe and Waterside
- New Forest West and Avon Valley
We also have two neighbouring vanguards: My Life a Full Life (Isle of Wight) and North East Hants and Fareham.
Why is Better Local Care needed?
We are living longer, which is putting additional pressure onto our existing NHS and social care system. As we get older, more of us develop health problems and need additional care to help us live our lives, however the current system is not set up to provide this level of long term support for such large numbers. Better Local Care aims to deliver this change that is so urgently needed.
Despite an increasing demand, resources remain limited and mainly used by large hospitals meaning that people end up having to get very ill before they go to hospital for treatment. By giving support sooner, in people’s homes and communities, we can help prevent them needing to go into hospital in the first place.
GPs are approaching crisis point and as the gateway to the NHS they are finding themselves seeing more and more patients with increasingly complex problems. By closing the gap between GPs, social care sector, voluntary sector and the rest of the NHS; GPs will have more time to care for the people who need them the most.
How will Better Local Care benefit patients and service users?
Local people should see better and more flexible access to a wider range of health services via their local GP. More problems will be addressed in a single visit, with extended opening hours, access seven days a week and longer appointments. This would make it easier for patients to get an appointment that suits them and better support for people with long term conditions.
Recent pressures on acute hospitals across the country demonstrate that current models of care are not fit for the changing needs of our population. Too many people are spending too long in hospitals when with the right support they could remain in their own homes. We will be working with GPs and the acute hospitals to make sure patients are only treated in hospital when it is absolutely necessary.
Keeping up to date
We will keep you updated with key developments in the project through the monthly newsletter. If you would like to sign up for our monthly newsletter, please follow this link. Better Local Care also has a dedicated website: www.betterlocalcare.org.uk