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Home > Better Health, Better Care, Delivered Sustainably

Better Health, Better Care, Delivered Sustainably

Posted by admin on June 15, 2016

A couple of weeks ago our Trust leaders met to discuss our Sustainability Programme.

We call it ‘Congress’, and we meet every three months. I thought I’d quickly look up the definition of ‘Congress’. It said, “representatives responsible for advocating the interests of the constituents they represent”.

Perfect name then! Seems appropriate as all 30 or so people in the room represented a big proportion of our staff.

It was an outstanding meeting, and I came away enthused – the passion and enthusiasm in the room was palpable – at the same time though I understood there were a thousand things to do!

We have a credible story to tell at our Trust. Together, we’ve achieved some great things over the past few years – but no one is complacent and we know we have more to do.

Interestingly, although we were there primarily to discuss our approach to ‘Sustainability’ we didn’t start there. Our Medical Director talked about ‘Population Health’. Actually, it was the best start to the session we could have wished for.

David is what I would describe as a “voice of change”. He paints a picture of how the vision of ‘Better Care, Better Health, Delivered Sustainably, will actually look like in years to come. It set the context of our session wonderfully. He talked about the “health of our entire population” – not just about the people we treat. He talked about the need to rid ourselves of boundaries – creating a social movement for better health and well-being. He talked about changing the “drivers” in the system so we can all be measured to meet the same priorities – directing resources into population health as opposed to the individual organisations that serve our health and social care system.

I think we all drew a breath when he finished his presentation, and what followed just seemed to make better sense?

‘Sustainability’ is the buzz word in the system across the country. There’s a lot of noise around which, including much of the media, talks about the financial crisis facing our NHS. It’s all true, but it doesn’t divert us from the challenges we have to face up to on both a daily basis – managing the demand in our ED departments, patient flow – as well as the big challenges that lie ahead – reducing our substantial deficit in order we can focus our resources better on our patients.

I said it at the session and I’d like to repeat it here. Money is not the prime driver in our Sustainability Programme. Sustainability is about getting a better deal for our patients – deliver high quality, safe, efficient services to maximise the experience of our patients and staff, and the financial benefits will follow. Our staff are already showing it can work, and some of the films we’ve been showing recently on social media and our Intranet and web site are clearly showing this.

‘Connections’ For me, the presentation on population health by David made some key connections as to why we have Better Care Together. Why we have Listening Into Action. Why we work hard at Diversity and Inclusion. Why we have health and well-being campaigns like ‘Flourish’. Why we have our DTOC Rapid Improvement Programme and why we have behavioural standards and values. They bring us together – they should be what we stand for and what we truly believe. We just need to be better at making those connections.

‘Messages’ can start as one thing and end up totally different as they are passed around any group of people or organisation. They’re easily diluted. That’s why we need to have more “conversations” around the Trust. More coming together - face to face. Doing that means we can listen to each other more – support each other better. Our members of Congress want to do more.

‘Engagement and Vision’ ‘a great place to be cared for; a great place to work’. We live and breath it, but I realise we can only validate that through our actions.

So we made a couple of films of the day. Some of our members of Congress talking about the session – no script, just from the heart. We also asked David to say something about population health on film – that’s featured here too.

Reading this blog might feel like it’s all just words. That true. It’s also true that for a lot of us every day we probably feel like giving up – but we don’t because we don’t lose sight of the patients and the place we’re trying to get to – Better Health, Better Care, Delivered Sustainably.

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