The foundations of the strategy is that the future of England’s health and social care system relies on the people who deliver it, providing care all day, every day
Health Education England (HEE) has launched it’s workforce strategy – Facing the facts, shaping the future. It takes into account that the staff delivering care and treatment face-to-face are key to the confidence that patients, service users, family and friends have in the NHS.
It acknowledges that good health and social care rely upon easy, consistent and dependable access to the right mix of engaged and qualified staff – who know what they are doing, have the time they need, have your best interests at heart and treat you with respect and compassion.
This consultation seeks to provide a framework for a national discussion on these critical strategic concerns for the NHS and social care, so that in the run up to the 70th birthday of the NHS next July, the leading national bodies of the health and care system can set out a clear roadmap from the present day to the end of the 2020s and beyond.
You can access the consultation here.
It also shows the actions the NHS has already taken and those it is about to embark on, whilst asking vital questions about the shared future of health and care and the people who deliver it. HEE, the national workforce body for health, has led the production of the document in close partnership with the other main national bodies – NHS England, NHS Improvement and Public Health England. It represents the shared common view of the national NHS leadership on the challenges and opportunities that need to be faced and the options for addressing them if we are to shape the future together. The structure of the document is split into three main sections, which could perhaps be described as What we have done, What we are doing and What still needs to be done.
Professor Helen Stokes-Lampard, Chair of the Royal College of GPs, responded to HEE’s workforce strategy – Facing the Facts, Shaping the Future: “With over one million patients visiting their GP surgery today alone, the role of the GP has never been more critical to the survival of the NHS – and the launch of this far-reaching consultation could not be more timely.
“We are encouraged to see the emphasis on general practice, particularly the proposals for enhanced GP specialty training to include a fourth year focused in the general practice setting. This is something that the College has long been campaigning for and will undoubtedly make our new GPs of the future more confident as well as competent in managing the complexity that is modern day general practice.
“General practice keeps the rest of the NHS standing but GP workload has risen by 16% over the last seven years, while the GP workforce has remained largely stagnant.
“We look forward to working with Health Education England and others in building a strong GP workforce for the future that will make general practice the career of choice for medical graduates and encourage and support existing GPs to stay in family medicine for the whole of their careers, for the benefit of our patients now and in the future.”