New £89m scheme to improve health

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Patients across the Fylde Coast are set to benefit from an £89m health and social care plan which will see records shared between services.

The money is coming from the Government’s Better Care Fund, and will be spent on bringing several health services together to better suit patients across Lancashire.

The changes and improvements are set to include:

l Setting up neighbourhood teams;

l Reducing lengths of stay in hospital;

l Moving services from the hospital into the community;

l Working closer with voluntary sector organisations;

l Providing appointments closer to people’s homes;

l Enabling faster recovery from a hospital admission;

l Improving administration systems so people don’t have to keep filling in forms.

Dr Anne Bowman, deputy chair of the Lancashire Health and Wellbeing Board, which has drawn up the plan, said: “This plan sees care organised around the patient, rather than the service, and will make it easier for health services and social care services to share records.

“As a GP, I feel this is something people tell us about all the time – that they have to tell 10 different people if they have a problem because information is not shared between them.

“People also struggle to get to hospital for appointments, or parking to access services there. This plan aims to help people receive the services they need closer to home.

“This is perhaps one of the biggest changes to come to Lancashire in many years”

The Lancashire Better Care Fund involves Lancashire County Council, NHS England, NHS clinical commissioning groups and district councils.

It will come into effect from 2015 onwards.