Women talk to each other in a focus group

ICSs adopt partnership working to overcome challenges in health and care

We’ve taken a look at some of the ways ICSs are adopting partnerships with the VCSE and community sectors to enhance care for their patients.

New partnership helps people recover in their own homes in Norfolk and Waveney

In Norfolk and Waveney, a partnership with Voluntary Norfolk, the British Red Cross and Age UK Norwich is designed to help people recover in the comfort of their own homes, with funding by Norfolk County Council, NHS Norfolk and Waveney Integrated Care Board and Suffolk County Council,

The Norfolk and Waveney Community Support Service (NWCSS) provides support for everyday tasks such as walking the dog, and food shopping, in order to help those with short-term needs and those leaving the hospital to live independently.

Amalgamating six separate services, NWCSS will benefit from the “combined wealth of experience and skills” of all partners, as well as a 30 percent increase in funding from £471,000 to £621,000 per year.

Tricia D’Orsi, executive director of nursing, said: “This service will give people greater choice and more control over their own recovery and independence, as they transition towards life living with, or after an injury or illness. It is a great example of voluntary organisations, local authorities and the NHS working together to improve outcomes for local people and communities. We believe the service will bring benefits to the wider health and care system so that people can leave hospital when they ready, creating capacity for others requiring hospital care.”

VSCE Accord Agreement signed in Greater Manchester

A VCSE Accord Agreement has been signed in Greater Manchester (GM), representing collaboration between the GM Combined
Authority, the GM Health and Social Care Partnership, and the GM VCSE sector.

The purpose of the agreement is to outline ways the organisations will work together and share responsibility for improving outcomes for GM communities.

The agreement presents eight shared commitments, including working together to reduce inequalities, embedding the VCSE sector as a key delivery partner of services for GM communities, and building on existing strengths to build “the best VCSE ecosystem in England”.

New partnership in Black Country focuses on improving health of social housing residents

The launch of a Health and Housing Forum in Black Country aims to improve health outcomes for social housing residents, bringing together the health and housing sectors to reduce health inequalities.

The Forum is led by whg, and includes Green Square Accord, Bromford, CHADD, Nehemiah Housing, Black Country Housing, Wolverhampton Homes, Wolverhampton City Council, Sandwell Council and Dudley Council.

Fay Shanahan, corporate director of operations and IT at whg, said: “Creating the forum provides social housing with a direct link to health, ensuring that the voices and needs of our customers are heard when health services are discussed and priorities agreed. We’ve been working with our health partners for a number of years now and have created several programmes, funded by health, which are making a huge difference in tackling health inequalities in Walsall. These include our community champions, who use their lived experience and knowledge of the communities they live in to encourage and support local people into advice and local healthcare services.”

Round table event in South Yorkshire to discuss ways to enhance collaboration on public health and health inequalities

Leaders from South Yorkshire ICB have recently met with colleagues from Sheffield’s voluntary sector, to discuss ways to enhance collaboration on public health and health inequalities.

The meeting with the Sheffield African Caribbean Mental Health Association (SACHMA), focused on the organisation’s work in mental health, research on cancer screening, and setting up support groups for dementia and memory loss.

Helen Sims, chair of the South Yorkshire VCSE Alliance and chief executive officer of Voluntary Action Sheffield said: “It is so important that we get out to visit our VCSE colleagues to see first hand the vital work they are doing. Partnership working between ourselves, the local council and voluntary sector is crucial to improving care for people and communities as it enables us to focus on wider determinants of health such as social, economic and environmental factors that can affect health and well-being and health inequalities.”

One Team networking event in Berkshire brings together local authority, VCSE and mental health teams

On the 22nd of November, a half-day networking event was a chance to bring together “key voices from the local authority, voluntary and community sectors, mental health teams in Berkshire as well as lived experience practitioners, service users and carers”.

Topics on the agenda included the Bracknell Happiness Hub, “a network of community and healthcare services that joined forces to offer a more holistic experience for service users and carers”, and The Joy App, a digital tool being considered to provide easier access to community support.

Attendees also discussed what “named key worker” roles might look like under the One Team model, and how they could work to help promote joined up care.

Last month, we looked at how ICSs are embracing new models of care and new ways of working, taking a look at some of the projects and programmes being carried out across England to explore the practical actions set in place.