Livewell Southwest has welcomed comments from Matt Hancock, the newly-appointed Health and Social Care Secretary, who has vowed to foster a new culture among healthcare providers in England focussed on prevention, rather than prescription.
Speaking at the Conservative Party Conference in Birmingham last week (2 October 2018), and reported in the Nursing Times, Mr Hancock said that in order to deliver on the promise of making health and social care services more joined up and bring them closer to people’s homes, a ‘common sense’ approach is needed.
Mr Hancock said: “The increasing demands put on our health service can only truly be solved by prevention as much as cure.
“We can’t go on treating them just as medical problems; we need to look after people as people, not just as patients and foster a culture less ‘popping pills and Prozac’ and more ‘prevention and perspiration’.”
Chief executive of Livewell Southwest, Dr Adam Morris, said: “We’ve already made fantastic progress towards integrating health and social care for the people of the South West. Livewell Southwest is driven by a mission to support people to stay well in the place, and the community, in which they live, and allowing them to enjoy the best quality of life. Integrated care is at the core of all we do.
“To hear the new Health Secretary advocating this approach further strengthens the argument – that we’ve been banging the drum about for some time – that prevention is always better than cure. Better for patients, better for communities and better for the NHS budget.”
Livewell Southwest has a wide range of services that empower people to take control of their own health and wellbeing with plans for more integration with other partners and providers to increase that range.
From a Weight Management Service that helps people to make sustainable lifestyle changes and regain control of their health, to Community Nursing that enables people with long-term health conditions to receive care not in hospital, but at home, and community mental health services that individuals can contact without a doctor’s referral, Livewell Southwest is shaping and delivering services that help keep people well both physically, and mentally.