Two-year Health And Care Plan Launched

Tea dance was the start of scheme aiming to improve the health and care of residents

Wandsworth Council, local NHS organisations and voluntary sector have come together to launch a joint plan to support Wandsworth residents

The two-year Health and Care Plan to improve the health and care of residents in Wandsworth was launched at a Silver Sunday Tea dance party for older residents at the weekend.

The plan sets out work to help people stay healthy and join up services. Initiatives include mental health support in schools, helping people with diabetes manage their condition and support for older people to be cared for at home instead of hospital

Councillor Melanie Hampton

Councillor Melanie Hampton, Chair of Wandsworth’s Health and Wellbeing Board, joined the celebrations and put on her dancing shoes at the launch at the Civic Suite. The event was part of a national day to overcome loneliness amongst older people that is held on the first Sunday in October. Residents of all ages were encouraged to join Wandsworth Council for tea, coffee, cake and dance the afternoon away to music from the ‘40s, ‘50s and ‘60s.

The plan for 2019-2021 brings together Wandsworth Council, the NHS and the voluntary sector to look at what’s important for the borough and sets out detailed plan for residents of all ages. Social isolation amongst older people is identified as a key area – with plans focusing on working with the voluntary sector to bring younger and older generations together and offer patients social prescribing*.

Councillor Melanie Hampton, Wandsworth Health and Wellbeing Board Chair, said: “We want the people of Wandsworth to lead healthier lives to Start Well, Live Well and Age Well and this new plan brings together all our key partners for the first time and is already making a difference on the frontline.

Councillor Hampton added: “For older people we are improving the support we provide to the frailest older people living in care homes and working with the voluntary sector develop services to prevent isolation – the tea dance today is a brilliant example of activities we’d like to see more of.”

The wider document includes plans across all age groups – and outlines three priorities for the coming year:

• Improve the mental health and wellbeing of children and young people by investing in new services, making it easier for young people to access support, and reducing waiting times – in particular focusing on building emotional resilience and supporting BAME young people.
• Support more people living with diabetes in community settings, enabling them to be supported closer to home. We will also double attendance at structured education programmes to improve patient confidence to self-manage and provide extra capacity at evening and weekends to improve uptake.
• Improve the support we provide to the frailest older people in care homes towards the end of their lives. For example, we will join up community services, including support for carers, and improve falls prevention services.

The plan was developed following a Wandsworth event In November 2018 which brought together health and care frontline staff, local people and representatives from lots of different community organisations. Ideas generated during the event have been used to develop the Wandsworth Health and Care Plan through the Wandsworth Transformation Group. Wandsworth Transformation Group includes members from the NHS, Council, voluntary sector, local GPs, hospitals and health service providers.

* Social prescribing is where GP practices signposting patients to non-medical services in the community - from walking or community groups where they can meet new friends to employment, benefits or housing advice.

October 7, 2019