Leading the way, in developing new models of care

Leading the way in new models of care – Symphony Programme Director, Jeremy Martin

Programme Director, Jeremy Martin explains in this blog how the national NHS new care models programme, brings together local health and care systems as vanguards to radically redesign care for the local population.

Developing new models of care within south Somerset as an integrated primary and acute care system vanguard is an exciting place to be at the moment.  Balancing the challenges that implementing change can bring, against the exciting possibilities that innovation can offer.

For us, being a vanguard, is a unique opportunity to help shape and develop a new way of delivering our healthcare services for patients across the county.  With 16 out of 19 GP practices in south Somerset now running with our Enhanced Primary Care model, which is improving access to care, treatment and advice for patients with the greatest need. We are already taking positive steps towards creating the sustainable and efficient healthcare service that patients and communities need.

By building and strengthening relationships with our primary care colleagues, we are taking a joint approach to designing, developing and continually refining our model to ensure that we can meet the needs of patients and healthcare professionals, both now and into the future.

The recent launch of the integrated primary and acute care system (PACS) framework by NHS England , was a significant positive step to recognising the opportunities created by both clinical and organisational collaboration between primary and secondary care, and reinforces the work already taking place in south Somerset.

Through vanguard funding, we have been able to develop our Enhanced Primary Care model. This model focuses on prevention and education, as well as providing the specialist care that our patients with the most complex long-term health conditions need.

Extended healthcare teams work to support the GP in primary care with nurse practitioners and health coaches taking a central role in providing support, treatment and advice for over 3,500 patients since September 2015.  In addition, a range of specialist healthcare treatments and services are being developed to be delivered in the patient’s own GP practice, rather than the traditional hospital environment, supported by a specialist complex care team.

Like all vanguard sites, we are continuously developing our model; through feedback from patients, their families and medical practitioners.  Our aim is simple – to create a healthcare system, that gives patients high quality, accessible care – that is efficient and sustainable for the future.  Our developing model, places the GP at the centre of their patient’s care; whilst health coaches and key workers continue to offer additional support and coordination of healthcare.  There is also a seamless link to the complex care service for when patients need additional, specialist care the most.

Transforming care services doesn’t happen overnight, the positive progress we are making in the Symphony Programme is a result of strong partnership working between primary and secondary care over an extended period of time and a shared vision to create an efficient and sustainable healthcare service – ultimately putting more resources back into primary care.

We strongly believe that new models of care, including the work of vanguards like ours, will be key to the delivery of sustainability and transformation plans which are being developed across the country.