Staff briefing roundup

Rob Gerlis – Welcome

Peter Wightman

  • COVID national and regional statistics (to come)
  • The country is again under a new national ‘stay at home’ lockdown
  • Main changes from Tier 4 restrictions are:
    • schools are now closed
    • only go outdoors for essential reasons – including exercising only once a day outside
    • reinforced call to work from home unless you cannot work from home
    • The latest guidance is on GOV.UK. We will share in this week’s staff newsletter
  • Still remain hopeful that Harlow Leisurezone, Bishop’s Stortford and Loughton sites go ahead

ICS boundary narrative

Narrative (for internal/system use only)

The Department of Health and Social Care and NHS England and Improvement have been discussing opportunities to support integrated care over a number of years, looking at both operational matters and the legislative framework for the system.

In recent months this has included discussions between the Secretary of State and the Chief Executive and Chief Operating Officer of NHS England and Improvement as NHSEI developed Integrating Care. The next steps to building strong and effective integrated care systems across England. These discussions, along with the experience of the ICS vanguards that fed in to the production of this engagement document, have highlighted the central importance of strong and positive working relationships between the NHS and its partners in local government in making integrated care a reality for patients and local people.

Several factors have been found helpful in fostering these stronger partnerships between the NHS and LAs, including alignment of boundaries (so that ICSs map on to one or more upper tier local authority with the LA or LAs being wholly within the ICS boundary). This helps bring together the delivery of health services, the delivery of social care and the delivery of local public health advice and services into and across shared geographical footprints, supporting more effective partnership working and enhancing the delivery of integrated care. The Government and NHSEI have concluded that, where possible, ICS and local authority boundaries should therefore be aligned.

Recent work to assess the extent of alignment across England found that around 70% of ICSs are already aligned.  Those areas where change is needed to align boundaries with upper tier local authorities have been identified.

Following further analysis and discussions between DHSC and NHSEI, the Secretary of State has concluded that a number of changes are required across the country to support more effective partnership working between the NHS and the relevant local authorities. The NHS Chief Executive and Chief Operating Officer have agreed to pursue this outcome and to work with the affected local systems – through their regional teams – to produce an implementation plan for achieving alignment, by making the necessary changes to current or planned ICS boundaries in each case.   These plans will be developed early in the new year.

Twelve systems are likely to be affected in some way. The specific implications in each case will be confirmed as the implementation plans are developed:

East of England – implications for:

  • Suffolk and North East Essex ICS
  • Herts and West Essex ICS
  • Mid and South Essex STP
  • Norfolk and Waveney ICS

Toni Coles – PAH

  • PAH is on OPEL 3/4 – has consistently been on this high OPEL status
  • Key issues – COVID admissions – over 230 mark, over 50% of bed capacity in the hospitals
  • Managing well but there is significant ambulance delay
  • Pressures around critical care capacity
  • Working both in Herts and west Essex as part of major incident – ensuring additional capacity
  • Working on admission avoidance and supporting higher acuity of patients

Anurita – Vaccination programme

  • 6,500 vaccine first doses have been given in west Essex
  • Thank you to CCG colleagues that have been working with PCNs to achieve this
  • There has been media around the first and second dose – we are supporting practices to deliver second dose
  • The key message around this is that unless contacted otherwise, the second dose will be going ahead
  • New Oxford AstraZeneca arriving at PCN designated sites – will be vaccinating with both Oxford and Pfizer vaccine this week and next


  • We are getting suggestions for vaccination centres, we will be collating and acknowledging suggestions and will be in touch if need be
  • If anyone gets any suggestions from anyone for these please forward this information to the Comms inbox
  • All line managers will need to review individual risk assessments with their teams – in light of the continued working from home
  • Any outstanding annual leave – please ensure you take this where you can
  • Thanks to everyone who completed the staff survey – we will share the results and deal with suggestions and concerns raised through this soon
  • Staff Partnership Group – welcome more colleagues to join, next meeting is on 26 January 2021
  • If you have anything to share, please email the Comms inbox e.g. any New Year’s resolutions, encouraging stories etc.

Sue Massey

  • Mid-week mindfulness sessions – the first session to kick off the New Year will start next week Wednesday (13 Jan), we encourage everyone to join

Your questions

Q. Are we still looking for our clinical and non-clinical staff to support the vaccination rollout?

A. Anurita – there may be the need in the future, but it is likely to come about and there are on-going discussions with HR

Ian – the key thing is that it is a marathon, not a sprint, it is a long term exercise to get through, even if people aren’t available now, and are down the line it will be good.  Expectations are extremely high being fuelled by politicians and we will respond to this in the best way.

Leave a reply:

Your email address will not be published but the name you enter will be.