Together we Speak Louder

Update on Sustainability & Transformation Plan for East Surrey & Sussex

Posted on: 15/07/2016

A spokesperson for NHS England said: “Sustainability and Transformation Plans are bringing together local health and care organisations, working collaboratively in new and different ways to deliver better health, care and efficiency for patients. This is a genuine chance to tackle care inequality and provide sustainable, joined-up services that benefit local people.

“For the plans to succeed, they have to be based on what people and communities say they want and need from their services – and each plan must set out how they plan to engage on this. Working together in new ways to deliver a shared vision of better health and care won’t always be easy – but it’s an opportunity that we must grasp.” 

Background information:

The importance of these plans

  • The Five Year Forward View vision will be achieved by everyone who has a stake in health and care adapting what they do, how they think, and how they act. There is a growing consensus that one of the most powerful ways to achieve change is by local services working together – across entire communities and pathways of care – to find ways to close the gaps between where we are now, and where we need to be in the future. Planning by place – rather than by individual organisation – will support the transformation of care for local populations as a whole.
  • Neighbouring NHS providers, CCGs, and other health and care services have come together to form 44 ‘footprints’. These are geographic areas in which people and organisations will work together and at scale to develop plans to transform the way that care is planned and delivered by 2020/21, and to narrow the three gaps outlined in the Five Year Forward View.
  • The footprints are now developing long-term Sustainability and Transformation Plans (STPs), using the insight from the Vanguards but also with input from their own patients, people and communities to ensure they truly respond to local needs. In doing so we will achieve a better sense of alignment in our services and be in a better position to close the health, quality and efficiency gaps by 2020/21. This is a real chance to tackle inequality and provide a sustainable health system that truly benefits local people.
  • An STP will not necessarily replace existing plans to improve services in an area. Instead it will act as an ‘umbrella’ plan for change: holding underneath it a number of different specific plans to address certain challenges, such as cancer, mental health, or urgent and emergency care.
  • Having a shared STP across a local community also does not mean that NHS organisations will have to lose their own autonomy or identity. But it does mean that organisations will be working to a shared, agreed plan which addresses how they will collectively improve health, care and finance for their local population by 2021. These are not new, statutory organisations – much decision-making collaborations.
  • Following the submission of initial plans in June, a series of conversations will take place with local and national leaders throughout July in order to test the ambition of the initial plans, and further scope what may be needed to deliver them. 

Engaging and consulting the public

  • We are clear that all STP footprints must engage local people to discuss and shape their STP proposals at all stages of the process – understanding what matters to them, and how services might be improved to bring benefit to all. Dialogue with local people is essential and local feedback and breadth of engagement will be taken account in an assessment of STPs.
  • Where areas are considering service changes, they will be required to undertake more formal engagement and consultation in due course.  

What these plans mean to the future of service providers and users.

  • The ultimate aim of a Sustainability and Transformation Plans (STPs) is to collectively agree ways to deliver better, more sustainable services that meet the needs of local populations by 2020/21. By local organisations working together to develop a shared plan and deliver services in new ways, we hope to close these health, care and finance gaps, deliver the Five Year Forward View, and bring benefit to local communities.

The sustainability of the NHS

  • As set out in the Five Year Forward View, the NHS has dramatically improved over the past fifteen years. Cancer and cardiac outcomes are better; waits are shorter; patient satisfaction is much higher. Progress has continued thanks to protected funding and the commitment of NHS staff. But quality of care can be variable, preventable illness is widespread, and health inequalities are often deep-rooted. Our patients’ needs are changing, new treatment options are emerging, and we face particular challenges in areas such as mental health, cancer and support for frail older patients. Service pressures are building, and for the NHS to remain sustainable in 2020 and beyond, we need to change the way we deliver our services. STPs are the local delivery of the Five Year Forward View, and at the forefront of the drive to ensure high quality services in the future. The Spending Review provided the NHS in England with a credible basis on which to do this.