Hertfordshire and West Essex granted new ‘Integrated Care System’ status

Health and care organisations from across Hertfordshire and West Essex have been granted a new national ‘Integrated Care System’ status. This is in recognition of the considerable partnership working to improve the health and wellbeing of the population.

Integrated Care System status (ICS) is the next step for the Hertfordshire and West Essex Sustainability and Transformation Partnership (STP), which was established in 2016. The Hertfordshire and West Essex Integrated Care System (ICS) will have the over-arching responsibility for ensuring that our population get the most from the £3.2bn combined health and care budget and that the skills of the area’s 56,000 health and social care workforce are used most effectively.

The ICS will be responsible for:

  • setting the strategy and goals for improving health and care in the area
  • overseeing the quality and safety
  • decision making
  • governance and financial management of services.

It will provide clinical and professional leadership and ensure our organisations pull in the same direction to help everyone – residents, service users, patients and staff – to achieve their potential.

The Right Honourable Paul Burstow, independent chair of the Hertfordshire and West Essex STP said:

“Gaining this national recognition that our area’s many organisations are working in a single-minded, co-ordinated way to achieve a healthier future for our population is a very significant step. Integrated Care System status moves us along the journey towards our goal of creating a health and care system fit for the future, with transformed services that join up around the people who use them.

“Health and care services need to be as convenient as possible – everyone should feel like they are dealing with one system instead of having to repeat their story to a series of different organisations. The years of effort that have brought us to this point have helped our teams and organisations to pull together and support one another. These relationships have been extremely helpful in recent months as we respond to the huge challenge posed by the coronavirus pandemic.

“I would like to thank everyone involved in bringing us to this stage over the years, particularly Iain MacBeath, Director of Adult Care Services at Hertfordshire County Council and Beverley Flowers, Chief Executive of East and North Hertfordshire Clinical Commissioning Group. Iain and Beverley have worked tirelessly since May 2019 as joint STP leaders, whilst continuing with their substantive roles. Their commitment to putting the people of Hertfordshire and West Essex first has driven the organisational and cultural changes we needed to get us to this point. The fact they have done all this while carrying on with their ‘day jobs’ shows their dedication. I am extremely grateful for their contribution.”

Andrew Geldard, chief officer said:

“We are delighted by the announcement that the ICS status has been granted. This will give our new joint accountable officer Jane Halpin, who will join us in June, a clear mandate to move things forward and also supports our local plans to develop our own Integrated Care Partnership.

“We would like to thank Beverley Flowers, Iain MacBeath and independent chair Paul Burstow for steering this over the last 12 months.”

Iain and Beverley will hand over the permanent leadership of the Hertfordshire and West Essex ICS to Dr Jane Halpin in June 2020. Dr Halpin will also lead the area’s three Clinical Commissioning Groups.

Ensuring that effective health and care services are designed and delivered in local communities in line with local needs will be the responsibility of our area’s three Integrated Care Partnerships. Each of the three geographically-based Integrated Care Partnerships (ICPs) – East and North Hertfordshire, West Hertfordshire and West Essex – will serve the population of a well-established local area and include a major hospital.

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