Responding to Covid-19 has required an incredible amount of us as a health and care system, as you all know, and there is still a long road ahead of us.
It has been clear to see that we have prioritised the safety of patients and staff through innovations and service improvements, and there has, and continues to be, commitment among colleagues to provide the best possible service to patients and clients within the restrictions and challenges that Covid-19 has brought.
The UK’s health and care system ‘as we knew it’ will not be seen again, and as we start to emerge and recover from the pandemic we will be faced with a ‘new norm’. Across the Humber, Coast and Vale Health and Care Partnership (HCV Partnership) we have been working together to develop our plans for the delivery of health and care services for the remainder of this financial year.
As we undertake this work, the scale of the challenge facing us as a system is becoming clearer. Covid-19 has widened health inequalities that existed in our communities and there are people across our region who have avoided health and care services due to fear of Covid-19, who may have needs that have gone unmet. It is a big challenge, but not one we face alone.
One of the biggest challenges is how we manage the growing lists of patients across the HCV Partnership waiting for access to treatment and care. It is clear that to address this challenge, prioritisation and validation of their health and care needs now and in the future are required, to ensure that our population receives equity of access to treatment and care.
We are working together to ensure equitable access to care across our region so that clinical need, not postcode, will always be the determining factor in prioritising patients for treatment as more NHS services come back online.
To support and enable this, the HCV Partnership Clinical and Professional Group has developed a set of core principles and put in place a series of actions to ensure organisations and all programmes of work across the Partnership are taking a consistent approach to prioritisation and validation of patients.
By working together across sectors, geographies and organisations, we can ensure the needs of our patients remain at the heart of all decisions as we continue to respond to the unprecedented events that have unfolded this year.
Our message as a leadership group to you is: we’re in it together, so let’s do the right thing at the right time.