Kent & Medway (Sustainability and Transformation Plan)
Presentation by Ian Ayres, Accountable Officer, West Kent Clinical Commissioning Group.
The Chairman welcomed Ian Ayres, the Accountable Officer for West Kent Clinical Commissioning Group. Kent and Medway STP. He advised that it had been called the Kent and Medway Sustainability and Transformation Plan (STP) but was now to be known as Sustainability and Transformation Partnership. He stated that this was a key shift. The NHS as it was operating was not sustainable without transformation, and partnerships would be key to delivery.
He advised that the three main problems to tackle were: inequalities within the population; health care quality, which was good but had had plateaued; and financial resources. Beneath this was a whole other set of issues such as not enough resources spent keeping people well which could only be done through partnerships and investment. There also needed to be more work on community care and support.
Centralisation of services was proven to be more efficient and there needed to be more.
In West Kent within the next 12 months there wold be more work on integrating community development and the shared responsibility to keep people healthy; more on health estate management - what services were needed what services were in the area and whether resources/buildings be pooled/shared; the question of how to help individuals – signposting etc.;
efficiencies in the running of the 7 hospital sites. By Spring next year there would be consultation on where to centralise the stroke service.
In response to a question concerning potential redevelopment of the Sevenoaks Hospital site he replied that what services should be provided from their sites, potentially additional or shared services, would be something to be looked at but they were not quite there yet. At the moment it was a case of looking at existing services and estates. Any redevelopment would require access to capital, and to meet any criteria they would have to prove all other options had been fully investigated first.
In response to question on Primary Care, he explained that in aggregate there was capacity at GP surgeries, however the space was not necessarily in the places needed. Buildings often hindered capacity too. Work was ongoing looking at population growth, demand and what needed to be done to any existing buildings to support.
In response to a Member’s question, with regard to any proposed retirement village and whether a satellite surgery would be helpful, it was hard to answer, it could be an inefficient use of a building for example but would depend on circumstances. Early engagement in any discussions would help.
A Member pointed out that for older rural communities, centralisation caused a number of issues and the user rather than just the financial expediency, needed to be put first. She also added that it was difficult to measure outcomes of public health preventive actions.
Members suggested the potential use of libraries, which Mr. Ayres thought was an interesting idea that had not come forward before.
A Member asked whether there was anything additional that the District Council could do to be of help and Mr Ayres responded that as District Council colleagues were ahead of CCG and other health colleagues in working in partnership.
In response to questions he also advised that more part time GPs was a national trend and there was a workforce shortage. Uncertainties with BREXIT meant that at the moment they were struggling to keep the same level of recruitment from Europe.
The Chairman thanked Mr. Ayres on behalf of the Committee and hoped to see him again at future meetings.