We want to improve the standard of care we offer so that all patients have equal access to the same high-quality care, no matter where they live in Lancashire and South Cumbria. We want to ensure that services are as close to people’s homes as possible, whenever they can be.
We also want to make sure that very specialised services for rare and complex procedures are organised in the best way, so people have the best possible outcomes. This might mean going to a centre of excellence for some specialist treatments.
The Lancashire and South Cumbria Integrated Care Board (ICB) is responsible for developing a joint forward plan for the NHS over the next five years. The ICB forms part of the Integrated Care System across Lancashire and South Cumbria, the formal partnership of organisations tasked with improving the health and wellbeing of our population.
Our local hospitals have begun working together to come up with ways of providing services that better meet your needs now and in the future. This means that, depending on how poorly you are or how serious your condition is, you may go to a different place to receive the treatment you need. This could be in the community, at your local hospital or at a specialist hospital centre.
These are the changes our hospital trusts are considering, and we are keen to understand what you think about this. We want to reassure you that going forward, we will reach out for your feedback and involvement as we consider each specific service that may change.
Joining up how the different provider trusts work will have many benefits and will help our local NHS address the many challenges it is facing, such as waiting times, quality, staff shortages, and finances.
We aim to improve the quality and reliability of and access to the care we provide by standardising how we do things, sharing resources and learning from each other.
The NHS trusts involved are:
- Blackpool Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
- East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust
- Lancashire and South Cumbria NHS Foundation Trust
- Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
- University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust.
Martin Hodgson, Chief Executive of East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust and chair of the trusts’ Clinical Programme Board, said: “We have some really good services in Lancashire and South Cumbria, run by highly skilled, dedicated staff. We are, however, facing some very significant challenges and need to work together to address these. By working as a network of service providers we have a huge opportunity to further improve health and care for everyone.”
Dr Gerry Skailes, Medical Director at Lancashire Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and the lead medical director of the Lancashire and South Cumbria Provider Collaborative, said: “We are starting to see excellent results from joining-up services across trusts, such as improved quality and reduced waiting times. For example, hospitals with shorter waiting times are offering appointments to patients whose nearest hospital has longer waits. Around 2,000 patients have chosen to travel further to have a quicker appointment.”
“While we have been working in this way for some time, the way the trusts work together is being strengthened. Where services are not already joined-up, clinical teams are now considering what working as a network will look like for their service, and what the benefits will be for patients, their families and our colleagues. We are really keen for our patients and colleagues to get involved to help shape these services for the future.”
We would like to hear your thoughts about what is most important to you and the general approach we propose to take to improving clinical services in our area. Your feedback will support the further development of our plans.
Get involved and have your say
Please take a few minutes to share your feedback in our online survey.