NCHA respond to House of Lords review of the NHS
The House of Lords Committee on the Long-term Sustainability of the NHS has published the NCHA’s written evidence, meaning we can now share our submission publicly.
The House of Lords appointed a Select Committee on the Long-Term Sustainability of the NHS in May 2016. Earlier this summer the NCHA responded to the call for evidence, and the policy team has continued to track oral evidence sessions.
The NCHA’s written submission has now been made public, releasing the embargo, allowing us to share our submission. In our response we made the case for change, highlighting three key areas for action:
- Delivering more care out of hospital has been a policy goal since the 1980s, but one that experts accept the NHS has failed to deliver. NHS leadership must now shift services that do not have to be delivered in hospitals into community-based settings – e.g. today hospitals report doing more than 1.1 million hearing aid repairs each year, this is not an efficient use of hospital capacity. With finite capacity in hospitals, failure to act will result in an unsustainable health and care system much sooner than 2030.
- Take preventative and public health seriously. Helping the population to age well should be the main priority. Policy documents from 2007 and 2014 state the importance of preventative and public health, but as the Five Year Forward View makes clear the NHS has not delivered on these pledges and is now “on the hook” because of this. Commissioners should be required to demonstrate what preventative and public health interventions they are focussing on, and be challenged if they fail to act.
- Hold system leaders to account and increase transparency. It is important to hold system leaders, both at a national and local level, to account when scarce resources are wasted. The adult hearing service provides one example of how despite a national review and guidance, NHS commissioners across England continue to spend over 25% more than they have to. This is only possible due to a lack of transparency and accountability in the system.
Read our full submission to the House of Lords Select Committee on the long term sustainability of the NHS.