‘Significantly strengthen’ partnerships with the voluntary sector to transform care

Ahead of BBC Radio 4’s documentary ‘transforming care – is it working?’ the Voluntary Organisations Disability Group (VODG) is calling on NHS England to significantly strengthen its partnership approach.

NHS England policy, building the right support, sets out how transforming care is a joint endeavour between people who use services and their families, providers and commissioners. VODG recognises that no-one holds all the answers but with the right approach the ambition to ensure people are supported in their local communities can be a reality.

A report from VODG earlier this year, based on a pilot project in London, identified a number of barriers faced by voluntary sector organisations supporting people out of long-stay hospitals. For example, there can be a lack of strategic and joined up approaches to meeting individuals’ needs. The report also highlights solutions and demonstrates how stronger accountability, improved communication and knowledge sharing can help.

VODG chief executive Dr Rhidian Hughes said:

“People have every right to have their preferences, aspirations and choices met when using services. NHS England should significantly strengthen its partnership with the voluntary sector to build community capacity and reduce the numbers within long-stay hospitals. The forthcoming NHS plan must be clear on how funding and services will shift away from expensive and outdated forms of provision.”