Improving mental health in Lambeth
Faced with increasing demand, budgets that don’t always keep pace and reports that services didn’t feel joined up, Lambeth council and the Clinical Commissioning Group (who organise and buy services on behalf of the population) took the innovative step of joining forces to improve things.
A new approach
In the past, we might have tried to salami slice budgets and keep things on track. But we realised that there was a better way to organise and provide services. So we formed the Living Well Network Alliance; a partnership of Lambeth Council, Lambeth CCG, South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust, Certitude and Thamesreach.
Working with service users
One of the big differences in this new way of working is that those who use services are seen as partners as well. So as services are designed and developed, people who may use them are central to that discussion and can help make a real difference in the set up of new support.
By doing this it will be possible to reduce duplication and the feeling that services are not joined up. This will help to reduce delays and confusion for people who need the services and the staff who provide them.
Prevention not cure
The Living Well Network Alliance is also determined to focus on prevention. We will encourage earlier care so that people receive better, clearer and more joined-up care, when and where they most need it, regardless of which organisation is providing it.
The Alliance is part of the broader “Lambeth Together” initiative to improve health and care in the borough, providing greater benefits to people, carers and families, staff and organisations. Lambeth Together will create a fully joined up health and care system and is being developed jointly between those who use services (and their families and carers) and those that provide and pay for them.
The Living Well Network Alliance is the first of Lambeth Together’s delivery alliances to launch. Other health and care services will form their own alliances in the coming months and years.
Word from Cabinet
Cllr Jacqueline Dyer, joint Cabinet Member for Health and Adult Social Care, said: “We have worked with service users, carers, communities, statutory partners, the voluntary sector and professional teams to develop the Living Well Network Alliance.
“It aims to improve how people are supported, make access to support easier and get best use of the ‘public pound’.”
Cllr Ed Davie, her fellow Health and Adult Social Care cabinet member, said: “We want to get people the treatment they need quickly and efficiently when they need it. The focus will be on preventing people getting ill in the first place, and supporting them earlier when they are unwell.”
Want to find out more and get involved? Then check out the Living Well Network Alliance website.