New NHS organisation to plan health and care services for local people
A new collaborative health and care organisation with a responsibility for providing £1.5 billion of services to the people of Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire has been established.
Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire Integrated Care Board came into being at one minute past midnight on Friday 1 July, following a successful transition from the region’s former clinical commissioning group.
Officials from the new organisation will meet during a virtual day one meeting in public to herald its arrival, discuss future plans and answer questions submitted in advance from people living in the local area.
The ICB for Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire is one of 42 others that have been established across England as part of national plans to improve integration between health and care organisations serving the same geography.
Following Parliamentary approval, and the subsequent Royal Assent, of the new Health and Care Act 2022, which outlines the need for more effective collaboration and better joined-up working, CCGs have been dissolved to make way for integrated care boards that will bring more cohesion to local health and care systems.
Sue Harriman, Chief Executive, Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire Integrated Care Board, said: “This is day one of a brand new organisation, and it is incredibly exciting to look ahead, and to think of all that can be achieved through genuine integration and real collaboration.
“However, while we have big plans, many of which build on strengthening the ties partners forged during the pandemic, today marks only the start of a long journey to truly change how we deliver health and care to local people.”
Stephanie Elsy, Chair, Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire Integrated Care Board, said: “For too long, residents have spoken of a health and care system that feels overly complicated and, at times, confusing, but we now aim to change that by bringing all our various health and care partners together around a single table.
“The integrated care board will make it easier for the NHS, local government and voluntary sector to work as one, which in turn should create a more seamless journey of care for patients, especially those who receive help from multiple partners, such as older people who may be visited at home, but still need to attend appointments in hospital or with their GP.”
As a sovereign statutory body, the ICB will work collaboratively to improve outcomes in population health, provide better joined-up care, reduce health inequalities and enhance productivity and value for money, while also helping the NHS support broader social and economic development.
The board itself will sit within the Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire Integrated Care System, known as BSW Together.
This is a wider network of local health and care organisations that will plan and organise how health and care services can be delivered across the region, while also committing to give local people and communities a louder voice in how services are provided locally.
Those organisations that make up the ICS include the region’s three NHS foundation trusts, 88 GP practices and three local councils, as well as the ambulance service, community caregivers, mental health providers and hundreds of local voluntary, community and social enterprise groups.
More information about the integrated care board can be found online, either by visiting www.bsw.icb.nhs.uk, or by searching for Bath and North East Somerset, Swindon and Wiltshire Integrated Care Board on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or LinkedIn.