CQC notes improvements in health and social care working

Date: 11 January 2019

Working together

Significant work has been done to join up services across Oxfordshire that is already demonstrating improved outcomes for people, according to a follow-up review by the national regulator for health and social care published this week.

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) found key improvements had been made eight months into an 18-month action plan that was agreed by Oxfordshire health and social care organisations after an initial review by the CQC in November 2017.

Following the first review, a key priority for system leaders has been to work more closely together to plan and deliver health and social care services, particularly for older people.

Senior managers have used their learning from Winter 2017/18, creating a system approach that has significantly improved joined-up working across NHS and Local Authority partners.

Health and care organisations have also been working together to improve patient flow through the system to reduce ‘delayed transfers of care’, so that patients who are physically well enough to leave hospital do so at the appropriate time.

The CQC report stated: “We saw some practical examples where the improved cross-system relationships had improved outcomes for people. For example, work had been undertaken to successfully reduce the numbers of people who remained in hospital unnecessarily.”

The Health and Wellbeing Board, which is responsible for overall health and care strategy in Oxfordshire, had also been expanded to include district councils and chief executives from the NHS Foundation Trusts and the Clinical Commissioning Group.

The follow-up review noted a sense of shared purpose between these organisations, and a willingness to take a system-based approach to resolving challenges and planning for the future. It also noted good involvement with older people in the Older People’s Strategy.

The health and social care partners in Oxfordshire acknowledge that improvements still required included a review of services commissioned to support pathways of care for older people, and better use of voluntary and community groups sector to support patients so they can go home from hospital.

Support and advice for people who pay for their own care – known as ‘self-funders’ – need to be developed further, according to the CQC inspectors.

Louise Patten, Chief Executive of Oxfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group, said: "We are really pleased to see that the CQC have recognised the significant improvements in our work as system leaders to reset the culture of our organisations that is now demonstrating improved outcomes for people in Oxfordshire.

“This has been a real learning journey for us; the CQC’s system assessment helped us understand the need for a more integrated approach across health and social care that focussed on working together to improve patient outcomes.

“I am hugely grateful to our staff, stakeholders and public for helping us to achieve so much in such a short time.

“This is, however, work in progress; we continue to develop the different parts of the health and social care system in Oxfordshire to work better together to improve patient care.”

  • Summary:

    CQC commends progress in joined up work

  • Transformation:
  • Date:
    11 January 2019