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Case for change

Despite ongoing work to join up care in Cheshire West and reduce demand for services, examples of fragmented care provision and funding challenges remain. People can too often fall into these gaps between services or have their care delayed as a result.

Integrated care will bring together the different organisations and services that look after people in Cheshire West and seek to better co-ordinate care, to make sure patient and carer experiences are as joined-up as possible and to support more people to stay healthy and well.

Joining up services which are currently provided separately is designed to enable teams to work together more effectively and efficiently, with the same shared goals. Partners believe it will benefit the people of Cheshire West by moving away from systems that are designed to treat problems when they occur, but often involve travelling to hospital or using Accident and Emergency or same day GP appointments.

Integrated care aims to help people to identify problems early, where possible treating the problems themselves. When professional care is needed this will be provided in a timely way, closer to home.

Integrated care would build on a foundation of excellent primary care, community-based services and a sustainable local hospital at its foundation.

As in many other parts of the country, funding for health and care services in Cheshire West is tight. Demand for services is increasing rapidly and, without change, partners say there won’t be enough money to maintain the quality and standards of health and care that the people of Cheshire West have every right to experience.

Partners believe the way we currently deliver health and care services to the people of Cheshire West is not sustainable. By 2021, if services continue to be delivered in the same way, partners estimate Cheshire West will face a funding gap of £100m.

They also believe that current funding isn’t always allocated consistently. They argue a new approach is needed.

Integrated care in Cheshire West aims to help change the way funding flows to make services more sustainable into the future whilst still improving the quality of care provided.

Instead of different organisations holding different contracts with lots of different service providers, there will be one budget to serve the needs of the whole population in Cheshire West. The objective of this is to allow funding to be directed where it is most needed to help care for people and keep them well.

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