The CSP has responded to an NHS England consultation on the future of integrated care systems (ICSs), calling for them to include senior level rehabilitation leads within their structure.
The public consultation, titled NHS Integrating Care: Next steps to building strong and effective integrated care systems across England, sought feedback from NHS organisations, and their partners, about how the introduction of legal reforms and guidance could enable ICSs to operate more effectively.
In its response, the society has submitted a series of suggestions, which include that
- there should be greater transparency at all levels about NHS decision making – particularly in relation to procurement
- all ICSs should be required to have a rehabilitation lead at a senior level and representation of staff through their trade unions and professional bodies
Rachel Newton, CSP head of policy, said: ‘This consultation is important as it could potentially lead to significant changes in how services in England will be commissioned and organised in the future.
Integrated care systems are a welcome shift away from competition and towards greater collaboration and integration
‘But it is essential we strengthen accountability at every level, from the secretary of state and parliament to NHS bodies that are part of local systems.
‘The last nine months in particular have highlighted the need to build public trust in NHS procurement with due process and transparency about funding.’
Meeting rehab needs should be part of the NHS constitution
From April this year, all parts of the health and care system in England will be required to work together as ICSs, and these systems are set to receive a statutory footing from 2022, alongside other legislative proposals.
The proposed legislative changes will require amendments to the NHS Constitution. As a result, in its submission to the NHS England consultation, the CSP said:
‘We would urge that at the same time the NHS Constitution is amended to include a commitment to meeting rehabilitation needs as a core function of the NHS.’
This is something that the CSP has joined forces in calling for with over 40 national charities and professional bodies through the Community Rehabilitation Alliance.
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