Jane Ashcroft's letter appears in Daily Telegraph
A letter written by Jane Ashcroft, Anchor's Chief Executive, has featured in Daily Telegraph today.
In the letter, written in response to the latest Delayed Transfer of Care statistics that were released yesterday, Jane highlights the need for better working together and Anchor's successful re-ablement trials in Birmingham.
This follows on from a report produced by independent think tank Localis and Anchor, entitled "Unblocking: Securing a health and social care system that protects older people", in February 2015, exploring the failures of the health and social care system and resulting sub-standard care for the older population. The report makes key recommendations to prevent excessive hospital admissions, delayed transfers of care and unnecessary health costs in the future.
It’s encouraging to see today’s NHS figures show a decrease in the number of delayed transfers of care compared to last year. Coupled with Tuesday’s announcement that NHS chiefs are taking a strong stance against delayed transfers of care by pledging to end the health services’ ‘long stay’ culture, we’re moving in the right direction. But the statistics are still far too high.
For too long, people have suffered unnecessarily as they find themselves trapped in hospital beds through no fault of their own.
The NHS has voiced a commitment to working with trusts and local systems to deliver this target. Now they must act. Historically, it has been frustrating because there are solutions on offer that have not been taken up on a wider scale. Anchor's successful trials offering ‘re-ablement’ beds at a care home in Birmingham, for example, have shown that better alignment of the health and social care sectors can improve lives and save the NHS hundreds of thousands of pounds.
We must not forget the bleakness of the NHS winter crisis. Now is the time to put structures in place across health and social care, to ensure the system does not fail the people it is meant to serve, and to ensure the delayed transfer of care statistics continue to decrease.
Jane Ashcroft CBE, Chief Executive at Anchor, England’s largest not-for-profit care and housing provider.