NHS organisations that provide care to patients are known as “providers”.
In Derby and Derbyshire providers are working together as a “provider collaborative”. Our members are:
- Chesterfield Royal Hospital Foundation Trust
- Derbyshire Community Health Services Foundation Trust
- Derbyshire Healthcare Foundation Trust
- DHU Healthcare Community Interest Company
- East Midlands Ambulance Service
- GP practices, represented by the GP Provider Board
- University Hospitals of Derby and Burton Foundation Trust
Patients are often seen by more than one NHS provider organisation for their care.
This means it is vital that providers work closely to ensure they coordinate patient care in an effective and seamless way.
The creation of the Derby and Derbyshire Integrated Care System in 2022 has enabled the partnership relationships that have already existed for a long time to become more formalised.
The idea is that organisations that are part of the collaborative have a shared purpose and effective arrangements to allow them to make decisions together, to:
- reduce unwarranted variation and inequality in health outcomes, access to services and people’s experience of care
- improve resilience by, for example, providing mutual aid across services
- ensure that specialisation or consolidation occur where this will provide better outcomes and value.
Aims of the Joined Up Care Derbyshire provider collaborative
Our aim is to improve the way care is delivered, by working together, while supporting the wider Integrated Care System objectives and aims. Our role is to:
- develop and deliver collaborative approaches to specific challenges
- develop partnership relationships, strengthening communication between providers, sharing approaches to challenges and opportunities
- improve efficiency, productivity and sustainability through collaborative working, integration or the consolidation of service delivery or corporate functions
- contribute to reducing inequalities of access and unwarranted variation, where provider collaboration can best achieve this
- improve decision making and accelerate change by taking on collective decision making and commissioning responsibilities
How the provider collaboratives are improving care
We are focusing on areas that are critical factors for high quality patient care:
- addressing inequalities of access and unwarranted or avoidable variation of patient care as part of the drive to provide consistency of care
- shared working on efficiency, productivity and sustainability so that we maximise outputs and minimise waste
- more effective decision making and the ability to make changes more quickly
The provider collaborative is starting to work on some key priorities including:
- improving clinical pathways
- fragile services – or those services where we have specific challenges around workforce and capacity to meet demand
- workforce, digital and estates
- back-office functions like recruitment, procurement
Priority service areas
We are working to improve the way musculo-skeletal conditions are treated.
Musculo-skeletal clinicians work for different providers across our Derbyshire system, but we are all working together to join up assessment and treatment services.
This will help to improve access for patients and reduce waiting times for appointments in hospital.
Speech and language therapy
Another example is speech and language therapy.
Colleagues in this area have worked together to develop a single point of access, so patients have one contact point rather than several.
This has been designed to make it easier for patients and colleagues to access this service, and this will help to make the referrals easier and quicker.
To improve the speech and language therapy service further we intend to merge the service across Derby and Derbyshire so that it works as one.
This will help to provide the best experience for children as they move through the service and will help make the best use of clinical expertise.
We are working to make the process of employing staff more efficient and a better experience for recruiters and candidates.
We aim to reduce the time it takes to employ people and to identify ways we can better manage our collective staff resource.
This will reduce the need for short-term contractors and non-NHS staff to provide cover.
We are also:
- developing a collaborative and “non-competitive” approach to our candidate “pool”
- a joined up and more streamlined approach to training, including our relationships with universities.
We are working together on identifying and resolving activities, treatments or steps in patient treatments that don’t add value. This will help improve efficiency.
We are also examining how to make better use across our system of:
- digital services
- information management and technology
- people services