The winter period is always challenging for the NHS and social care, and it is particularly challenging this year because flu is in high circulation. It has therefore never been more important to get people out of hospital on time – to benefit patients and help our fantastic NHS staff make space for those who need urgent care.
That’s why I am delighted to confirm that Croydon is one of just six areas in the country selected to benefit from a trial of new innovative solutions to free up hospital beds, make sure patients are getting the right care at the right time and allow ambulances to get back on the road quicker.
As part of the trial, One Croydon Alliance will pilot the use of a fully integrated team between acute and community, an integrated IT system, integrated financial systems and integrated leadership, and improve coordination between hospitals and community care settings like rehabilitation services.
In total, up to £14.1 billion additional funding will be invested by government nationwide over the next two years to improve urgent and emergency care and tackle the backlog in the NHS – the highest spend on health and care in this country’s history. This has seen 91 community diagnostic centres opened and the rollout of virtual wards across England, which allow some non-urgent treatments to be given at home.
This is all great news for local residents and will support the work I have been doing with local NHS leaders to get extra capacity provided across Croydon South, which has already led the creation of a new elective operations centre at Purley Hospital and will eventually see the old CALAT site in Coulsdon developed into medical facilities.