Making care better

Making care better

We’ve worked with our members and public sector services to bring about better care.

Known as Brighton and Hove Caring Together, the aim is to improve services for frail and vulnerable people to help them to stay health and well. The programme also aims to resolve some of the challenges and pressures facing local health and social care services, and is part of plans to develop a new plan for health and social care services across Sussex and East Surrey. This plan is known as the Sustainability and Transformation Plan for Surrey and East Surrey.

This case study describes some of the recent changes we’ve helped to bring about in this work. Our role is to ensure that the skills and expertise of voluntary and community organisations informs the development of the programme, and that they’re able to get involved in providing services in our local communities and areas.

 

Contributing to the development of the programme

We’ve been involved at every level of the better care programme from the board who are responsible for the whole programme to meetings of service providers and those commissioning public services. We’ve used our extensive knowledge of providing community-based services and involving volunteers in public services, as well as of the voluntary and community sector more widely, to input into these key strategic meetings and help shape the development of the programme.

We’ve helped to develop new governance arrangements for the programme, which aim to simplify the existing structures.

We’ve helped to bring about funding for social prescribing and befriending activity in the city. Two pilot projects are now looking at how current service providers can work collaboratively together and how to evaluate the impact of this activity. We’re facilitating the current service providers to identify how they can work together and how to develop ways of measuring the outcomes of social prescribing and befriending activities. There will be a formal commissioning process for future services from April 2018.

We’ve used our knowledge of voluntary and community organisations to raise the profile of their work at various meetings, particularly with commissioners who’re responsible for commissioning services to keep people well.

We’re part of a group of organisations exploring solutions to transport issues faced by people in the city. We’re currently surveying people to better understand the issues.

 

Developing multi-disciplinary teams

We’ve supported the development of more multi-disciplinary teams. These teams focus on people who have complex needs. Staff in the teams work together to understand what matters most to patients and how they can help meet those needs. The teams include GPs, pharmacists, nurses, mental-health staff, carer-support workers and Age UK, Brighton & Hove’s care coaches.

We’ve helped to develop a process for signposting and referring people to voluntary and community organisations who can support people through befriending, advocacy, money advice, dementia friendly activities and day centres.

As a result of this work we developed a set of quick reference sheets which brings together the population needs and the key organisations that can support people with those needs in local areas across the city. Feedback from health and social care staff about these sheets has been very positive.

We’re working with voluntary and community organisations who provide befriending services and the multi-disciplinary teams to find ways of building better connections between them. The learning from this will help to build better connections between all local voluntary and community organisations and heath and social care organisations.

We organised an event which brought key organisations together to look at the role voluntary and community organisations can play in working collaboratively with health and social care organisations to support people. We used a case study from a local organisation to map out the experiences of patients, to ensure that patients experiences inform the development of any services or changes. We’ve also produced a short video of a patient explain their experience of services.

 

Helping patients to be involved

We’re also working to strengthen patient participation groups in the city.

 

“Community Works knowledge and experience has been invaluable to us. They've helped to facilitate our links with local befriending services, and supported us in our referrals. They've been a vital link between health services and the voluntary and community sector throughout this project. ”

“Community Works knowledge and experience has been invaluable to us. They've helped to facilitate our links with local befriending services, and supported us in our referrals. They've been a vital link between health services and the voluntary and community sector throughout this project. ”

NEXT | Making the city fairer

We worked with our members to input into the commission to help shape plans for and ensure a fairer city for all.