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Sustainable Primary Care Strategy launched

07 December 2015

Services that provide care for Island residents are to work more closely together in the future.

That is the ambition set out in the Sustainable Primary Care Strategy, published today. The strategy which is the first of its type in Jersey, has been produced by people from across health and social care, working closely together over the past two years; this includes the Health and Social Services Department (HSSD), the Social Security Department, representatives from primary care (GPs, dentists, optometrists, pharmacists and community nurses) and members of voluntary sector organisations.

Primary care services in Jersey are used by Islanders on a regular basis throughout their lives. HSSD is redesigning health and social care services to cater for the needs of a growing elderly population and to allow people to continue to live in their own homes as long as possible. One of the areas being looked at in detail is the way all health and social care services in Jersey link together, including primary care.

Significant investment in primary care services has already been made, including:

  • Jersey Talking Therapies
  • health visiting
  • rapid response teams
  • community midwives
  • reablement services
  • end of life care
  • community alcohol services

The Sustainable Primary Care Strategy is part of HSSD’s White Paper and P82, ‘Caring for each other, caring for ourselves’. The Strategy sets out five ambitions, covering Patients, Payment, Partnerships, People and Processes. These were developed by a range of stakeholders, informed by listening to the views of Islanders, and from work by the Jersey Consumer Council in 2014.

Consultation themes

Three key themes arising from the consultation were:

  • care should be affordable, but patients should continue to pay for GP services
  • professionals need to work together to deliver integrated care, with the needs of the patient at the centre
  • more care should be delivered in the community

Minister for Health and Social Services, Senator Andrew Green said “I welcome this strategy, as it is essential that primary care remains central to our health and social care system; it looks after us for a lifetime, providing community-based services that are critical in keeping us well and supporting us at home.”

Director for System Redesign and Delivery for HSSD, Rachel Williams, whose department worked with partners to develop the strategy  said “High quality, safe and effective primary care is essential to improving our health and wellbeing and protecting our very young, vulnerable and elderly populations. This is definitely a step in the right direction, and we look forward to continuing working closely together going forwards.”

Chair of the Primary Care Body in Jersey, Dr Nigel Minihane said “This is continuing the long-running work to make primary care the bedrock of future health care in the Island. Primary care has been shown to be the most cost effective way of delivering services worldwide and the challenge for Jersey is to make preventive and curative treatment available to all, especially vulnerable members of our society who are currently unable to access it.”

Senator Green added “We have already achieved a great deal, but we could do even more, so that the right care is provided, in the right place, by the right person, at the right time. This strategy sets out our vision for achieving this aim. I would like to thank everyone involved for their time and determination to complete this important piece of work to help Islanders make the most of their healthcare services.”

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