Burnham sets out integrated care plans

24 Sep 14
A Labour government would reform NHS hospitals to become integrated care organisations under plans to merge physical, mental and social provision, shadow health secretary Andy Burnham announced today.


By Richard Johnstone in Manchester | 24 September 2014

A Labour government would reform NHS hospitals to become integrated care organisations under plans to merge physical, mental and social provision, shadow health secretary Andy Burnham announced today.

Setting out more details of the party’s pledge to create a National Health and Social Care Service, Burnham said that Ed Miliband's promise to increase NHS funding by £2.5bn in his conference speech yesterday meant the party had funding to back up its integration ambitions.

‘A vision for a 21st century NHS there when you need it, personal to you and your family, with time to care. A National Health And Care Service based on people before profits.’

Setting out some of the details of his plans, Burnham said that a Labour government after the next election would not only ‘rescue a shattered service’ by repealing the coalition’s controversial Health and Social Care Act, but would also set out ‘a vision for a 21st century NHS there when you need it’.

This was needed to increase the stability of the NHS so it could undergo the ‘radical change’ required to encompass social care.

‘We will ask hospital trusts and other NHS bodies to evolve into NHS integrated care organisations, working from home to hospital coordinating all care – physical, mental and social,’ he said.

‘Why? Because it makes no sense to cut simple support in people’s homes only to spend thousands keeping them in hospital.

‘The ever-increasing hospitalisation of older people is no answer to the ageing society. Bringing social care in doesn’t add to the financial burden. It is the key to unlocking the money.’

Burnham said he would write to every household in England to set out the reforms in 2015 to explain the new service, mimicking letters sent by Nye Bevan on the foundation of the NHS in 1945.

The additional funding announced by Miliband yesterday would be used to provide the additional staff needed for the system.

‘We will recruit new teams of home care workers, physios, occupational therapists, nurses, midwives, with GPs at the centre,’ Burnham added.


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