We have amazing people working in the NHS in North West London, but the ways in which we work need to change.
People are living longer, but that’s also led to an increase in the number of people suffering from complex, long-term health conditions. As a result, the care needs of our population are changing, with people often requiring input from different types of doctor, carer or specialist to treat them. This is creating increasing pressure on our services, to the point where we can no longer rely on them to meet the needs of the population and provide consistent, high quality care if they continue as they are currently set up.
In North West London, we have recognised this and, as such, are changing the way we organise our hospitals and community services to work to meet these challenges. But in order to do that, we need to work differently too.
That means ensuring that all our doctors, nurses and other health and social care professionals with the appropriate skills, are always available in our hospitals and community care settings to deliver care to people when they need it. It also means creating new ways of working, with more multi-professional and cross-organisational teams. The focus is on centering care on the individual and developing a single, shared care plan ensuring that the person has access to the right professionals at the right time, and that care is joined up.
Our Workforce and Organisational Team has been established to support healthcare providers within the NHS and the third sector across North West London so they can work differently and more effectively with patients and service users. We are developing initiatives to specifically address the needs of our doctors and nurses, as well as North West London-wide solutions regarding new ways of working, re-designing roles and developing the skills to support emerging new models of care.
The process of supporting our staff has already begun with the recruitment of physician assistants to support GPs and practice nurses. We are also working with our educational stakeholder, Health Education England North West London (HEE NWL), to analyse existing staffing levels and what we need for the new healthcare environment. This will enable better workforce planning and targeted recruitment campaigns in the areas of identified staff shortages.
The Change Academy, our innovative leadership and team development programme, has been specifically set up to foster the practical skills needed to improve the way care is delivered in North West London.
Our aim is to prioritise education and training programmes, support and retain talent by developing career pathways and opportunities for progression across health and social care in North West London.