What does Health & Social Care in Cornwall Need?
What does Health & Social Care in Cornwall need? The short answer is more money and less bureaucracy! Just so you understand I give careful thought to these matters which are so important to so many, I invite you to go back over a few of my old posts on my website but more important, read to the end of THIS post. It is a bit long!
So, where are we now. A shed load of acronyms ACO, ACS, ICS, STP but very little cash on the table to meet increasing needs. And if you are following the media at the moment you will be wondering what the Council Cabinet is or is not agreeing to and where that puts its relationship with health.
I have had many lobbying emails and this is what I have started to reply to them (got a bit fed up so it is a bit short and robust):
The Cabinet in Cornwall will not be voting on an Accountable Care System on 28 March so you are misinformed.
The Sustainability and Transformation Plan is a Health not Council plan and CC said it was not fit for purpose.
The private sector is already involved in the NHS and Labour and Conservative Governments have both had a hand in that.
If I am wrong and an Accountable Care System or any other proposal renamed but the same, comes to Cabinet before the (National) Judicial Review, I will not be voting for it!
WEST CORNWALL HEALTHWATCH
PRESS STATEMENT 05.03.18
As Cornish residents and West Cornwall HealthWatch campaigners, we are well aware of how difficult it is for members of the general public to make sense of what is going on with Council and NHS decisions around Integrated Strategic Commissioning as part of an Accountable Care System (ACS) within Cornwall.
We have genuine and serious concerns about the proposals – as far as it is possible to understand them in all the confusion!
- Firstly, we do not agree that “integration” can be successfully imposed from above and consider that the key priority is supporting integration of services at the local level. I FULLY AGREE & I SAID AS MUCH AT THE INAUGURAL MEETING OF THE SHAPING OUR FUTURE HEALTH & SOCIAL CARE LEADERSHIP FORUM LAST TUESDAY
- Secondly, we are very concerned at the haste with which Cornwall Council is going, rushing headlong into major responsibilities without a clear idea of why or how. WE MIGHT HAVE BEEN BUT AS I & OTHER CABINET MEMBERS RECOGNISE THE PROBLEMS, WE ARE EASING OFF THE GAS!
- Thirdly, and most fundamentally, there clearly needs to be more money for health and social care investment and service provision, but there are no guarantees that this will be available. Let’s be clear, Cornwall Council will have to accept the blame when this goes wrong! I KNOW & AGREE, HENCE I AM SPEAKING UP ASSERTIVELY & TAKING MY CABINET RESPONSIBILITIES SERIOUSLY
We also have major concerns about democracy and the democratic process.
- Firstly, about our right as citizens and health campaigners to lobby our elected councillors and board members of Cornish health organisations, without being vilified and labelled as “far left-wing protesters”. We ourselves are avowedly non-party political, and are offended that we could be branded in this way. ACCEPTED & WHILST I GROW TIERED OF BEING ACCUSED OF WALKING BLINDLY INTO AN ACO/ASC/ICS, I DO NOT THINK THAT IT IS ONLY FAR LEFT-WING PROTESTERS THAT ARE LOBBYING
- Secondly, about a fear that the democratic process is being sidelined by unelected council officials and health bosses. Elected councillors and health campaigners seem to be regarded as irritations when they fail to fall in line and wholeheartedly endorse plans that have already been signed up to. (The Accountable Care System Accord for Joint Working Arrangements in Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly was set out last November). IT WAS AGREED TO LAST JULY WHEN THE CABINET ONLY FORMED AFTER THE GENERAL ELECTION IN JUNE. THE ACCORD NEEDS TO BE RE-WRITTEN & I HAVE RAISED THIS AND WILL BE SEEKING CLARIFICATION AT CABINET ON 28 MARCH, BEFORE ANY VOTE
We very much hope that in their haste to establish ‘Shadow ACS arrangements by April 1st, decision makers will not merely rebrand or rename their plans but instead will take time to consider the suitability of their decisions and their decision-making processes. IN MY OPINION, WE DO NOT NEED ANY MORE ACRONYMS, COMMITTEES OR BOARDS. THE HEALTH & WELL-BEING BOARD HAS A PURPOSE THAT HAS THE REMIT TO DELIVER WHAT WE ARE GOING AROUND IN CIRCLES OVER, IF IT IS EMPOWERED TO DO SO (see purpose of Health & Well-Being Board Below)
Press release issued by the Committee of West Cornwall HealthWatch END