Long-Term Sustainability of the NHS: Policy Briefing

A Policy Briefing  aimed at health care professionals is available for LKS staff to share in their own organisations.  This has been produced and shared by the JET Library, Mid Cheshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. Please feel free to reproduce it (with acknowledgement to JET Library) for your own purposes.

Impact on library policy/practice:

  • With a longer term strategic plan for the transformation of the NHS LKS teams may be asked to deliver evidence and knowledge to managers, commissioners and transformation teams as health care services undergo this change.
  • Any longer term plans for the NHS may impact on the actual delivery of LKS regionally and nationally and therefore, LKS will need to consider whether existing models of service delivery meet the requirements of a transformed NHS.
  • LKS need to consider developing a longer term strategic plan for the next 15-20 years for NHS library services which maps to the recommendations outlined in this report.

Source: House of Lords Select Committee

Link to main web site

Link to report

Publication format: Web site and pdf

Date of publication: 5th April 2017

Summary of driver: The House of Lords appointed a Select Committee on the Long-Term Sustainability of the NHS on 25 May 2016 to consider the long-term sustainability of the National Health Service. The report was published in April 2017 and found that there was no short term solution to sustainability recommending that an Office for Health and Care Sustainability should be set up to look 15-20 years ahead and focus on:

  • Demographic Change
  • Service Demand
  • Workforce and Skill Mix
  • The balance of funding between health and social care

Key features of driver:

  • The fragmentation and regulatory burden that stops integration between health and social care should be tackled
  • NHS England and NHS Improvement should merge and then include strong representation from local government
  • The NHS should remain funded from taxation and free at the point of use and health spending beyond 2020 needs to increase in line with GDP growth
  • Beyond 2020 funding for social care should reflect increased need or, at least, rise by the same amount as NHS spending
  • Responsibility for the social-care budget should be transferred to the Department of Health which should be renamed the Department of Health and Care
  • Those who can afford care should pay for it subject to the funding caps recommended by the Dilnot Commission
  • The Government should implement new mechanisms to help people to pay for their own care – this could be an insurance-based system starting in middle age
  • There is an absence of long-term skills planning
  • Health Education England should be “substantially strengthened” and transformed into a new, single, integrated strategic workforce-planning body – looking 10 years ahead. Its independence should be guaranteed with a protected budget
  • The Government should identify parts of the NHS which are falling behind in innovation and technology and make it clear that there will be funding and service-delivery consequences for those who “repeatedly fail to engage.”
  • The Government should require NHS England/NHS Improvement to achieve greater levels of consistency in efficiency and performance at a local level. Greater levels of investment and service-responsibility should be given to those who improve the most.
  • The Government should restore the public-health budget and maintain a ring-fenced budget for the next 10 years. It should remind the public that access to the NHS involves rights as well as responsibilities

Primary audience: All trust staff

Date last updated: 11th May 2017

Due for review: 11th May 2019

Group member responsible: TP

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