New system of local organisations to improve local care

The pandemic has shown the importance of collaboration to help everyone get the care they need. This is the principle behind the new regional Integrated Care System, which began operating from today, April 1.
How Integrated Care Systems work

It involves the the NHS, councils, the ambulance service and commissioners working closely together to help fund and deliver more convenient and personalised services. This means that health professionals can act earlier and make quicker decisions to help people get treatment and support. They will also aim to tackle the causes of ill health such as housing and unemployment with the goal of everyone having the same access to good health and care services.

Healthwatch exists to ensure everyone can speak up on services and we use this feedback to help influence changes and improvements. We support this improved collaboration to help people have better experiences of local services. The launch of the ICS is a major milestone outlined in the NHS long-term plan.

In Bristol, North Someset and South Glos 10 organisations – including NHS Trusts, councils, the ambulance services, commissioners and community providers – make up the Healthier Together partnership, which was established in 2016.

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