The Hampshire and Isle of Wight CCG Partnership, Isle of Wight NHS Trust, Isle of Wight Council, local GPs and many others are working together to improve health and care on the Isle of Wight.
With much work already underway, all organisations share a vision for health and care on the Isle of Wight that will see people living healthy, independent lives.
With a population in the region of 141,000, it is vital that we develop local solutions to the challenges faced on the Island. While many of the challenges we face are also evident across the country - people are living longer with complex health and care needs and both health and social care are experiencing financial challenges– some challenges, such as recruiting enough staff and accessibility to highly specialised services, are heightened due to the Island geography.
As part of this commitment to a healthier community and improving the quality of our services, the Isle of Wight has created the Isle of Wight Health and Care Plan. The Plan sets out a number of health priorities for the Isle of Wight community over the next three years.
What are our priorities?
Investing in community services
Supporting people to return home from a stay in hospital will involve improving how we work together to discharge people as soon as they are ready to leave. This is better for patients and will significantly reduce the amount of money being spent on unnecessary hospital care.
To support this ambition we have announced more than £800,000 of investment in community services.
Improving mental health services
We have started transforming the way mental health services are provided on the Island. Support will be tailored to the individual, for a more effective and efficient service.
The NHS and other partner agencies involved in providing mental health services have created the Blueprint for Mental Health, which sets out a joint vision for change. The Blueprint makes key commitments to mental health provision that include:
developing services that are able to connect from the community to specialist services, when required;
breaking down boundaries between GP’s, community and hospital services and involve third sector partners effectively, so that people have a better experience of care;
enabling people to lead a full and meaningful life;
supporting recovery and developing our workforce so that we have the right mix of trained, skilled and experienced staff;
improving the range of community-based mental health services available to those who need them;
moving NHS community mental health services away from hospital sites so that they are in the heart of the community they serve.
Find out more about the Mental Health Blueprint here.
Improving our hospital services
Over time, our continued investment into community services will reduce the need for people to go to hospital. This will free up staff to work elsewhere in the hospital or in the community and reduce the amount we pay to agencies for temporary workers.
Smaller hospitals sometimes struggle to maintain the quality of the services they provide. This can be because they see too few patients and often struggle to recruit and retain staff. This is also true for the Island and therefore making the services that our population rely on resilient is absolutely vital.
An important part of our plan is to work with a mainland partner to support some of the hospital services on the Isle of Wight. By working more closely with other parts of the NHS we will be able to increase the number of doctors, nurses and other health care professionals available to work in Island services. It will improve the quality of those services and ensure that they are fit for the future.
Productive health and social care
Social care has a vital role to play in keeping people well. Whether that is colleagues in social work, private care providers such as nursing or care homes, or support services for children or adults in need or at risk. We have made excellent progress improving children's and adult social care on the Island and we will continue to work together to make sure our services are built around what local people need.
Care will be coordinated by teams of different health and care professionals to support people in a location as near to their home as possible. Before deciding where else to invest we will analyse the current local need for community services and work with social care, our GP practices and the voluntary sector to make sure we invest in the things that are important to local people.