The Children and Young People’s Alliance has been developing its structure and governance over the past 12 months. It is led by Michelle Carrington and we have had dedicated roles in place since October 2021, which includes Karen Nickerson as our project support officer and me.
The alliance membership includes a wide range of stakeholders across our region and is constantly developing to ensure as wide a reach is achieved. We are also supporting our ICS to deliver the specific outcomes for children and young people set out the NHS Long Term Plan. This is led by the national NHS Children and Young Peoples Programme and delegated to NHS England and NHS Improvement (NHSEI) regions to support Integrated Care Systems (ICSs) in their delivery and planning.
Initial workstreams include integration of services within health and care, led by local systems (vital in addressing the current pressures in urgent and emergency care), implementing the national asthma bundle of care, and improving outcomes in diabetes and epilepsy. Other key priorities include identifying and protecting the most vulnerable children and young people, spotting the deteriorating child, supporting children and young people with end of life and palliative care needs, developing a joint approach to transition and 0-25 model of care, developing a focus on speech, language and communication needs and tackling the rise in childhood obesity.
To help ICSs in their delivery of these improvements NHSEI allocate funding to specific work programmes which are aligned to key deliverables and progress is reported through the North East and Yorkshire NHSEI Oversight delivery group.
Our alliance meets every eight weeks to discuss strategic planning and operational delivery in how we aim to achieve these outcomes and link this with our population health and inequalities data across the ICS. Our governance structure and terms of reference are in place along with a dedicated NHS Futures platform which details activity and progress on alliance activity specific and specific workstreams. To ensure we utilise the expertise of stakeholders we are able to appoint clinical leadership into these work programmes, for example the asthma and diabetes programmes.
We will build much stronger relationships with our education, social care, and voluntary sector partners to join up to deliver better outcomes and give our children the best possible start in their lives. We’re currently working on an engagement strategy with the ICS team to ensure children, young people and their families are central to all that we do.
There are also interdependencies with the mental health, learning disabilities and maternity programmes and we work together where relevant to avoid duplicity and streamline approaches.
Also, over the past 10 months as we emerged from the pandemic there was a significant rise in the number of children and young people who were accessing Urgent Care departments with minor childhood illnesses including unseasonal viral infections and we have been working with NHSEI to support our health providers in managing this need.
In the future, I hope to bring you more specific updates going forward.
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