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'Think Tank' day for Dorset healthcare professionals

By jspiteri  |  Posted: April 15, 2014


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More than 100 key stakeholders from diverse aspects of healthcare and social services across Dorset recently joined forces at a one-day workshop event, all focused on streamlining care provision for the county’s older people with complex needs and those with multiple long term conditions.

Representatives from commissioners, the voluntary sector, third and independent sectors as well as education providers and the ambulance service responded positively to the call to join forces in a ‘think tank’ day of strategic planning towards the integration of their services.

The Better Together programme to join up health and social care is looking at the future of community based teams for older people with complex needs and people living with multiple long term conditions in Bournemouth, Dorset and Poole.

Leading the event, Sally Sandcraft, Deputy Director Review Design and Delivery (East) NHS Dorset CCG was pleased with the outcome: “The good work achieved at this event was informed by what we know people want and need locally and nationally. A reassuring and unanimous view across all attendees illustrated a real appetite for positive change and a passionate commitment to improving care for our older population. Everyone’s recommendations are helping to shape a proposal on the future of services which will be available for public comment during May 2014.”

Christopher Beale, from Borough of Poole Voluntary Service was excited about the atmosphere in the room. He said: “It’s really good to hear so many people singing from the same hymn sheet. We need fundamental cultural change to meet current and future demands.”

One of the representatives from the GP practices, Dr Rachel Stowe, added: “It was a great opportunity to share ideas with other people from diverse backgrounds and to allow enthusiasm for collaborative care to flourish. There has always been a need but there is a real political and financial motivation now to push it forward and between us we should be able to remove the blocks that are in the way.”

The Better Together programme is a Dorset-wide initiative that will radically change the way health and adult social care services are delivered in the future. For more information visit www.dorsetforyou.com/better-together.

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