We will only achieve our vision if we work with partners across the county, in collaboration with Somerset’s residents and communities
In Somerset we want people to live healthy independent lives, supported by thriving communities with timely and easy access to high-quality and efficient public service when they need them
This vision is owned by all of us; we want to work together to improve the lives of our residents. We will only achieve this if we work with partners across the county, and with Somerset’s residents and communities.
Our Health and Care Strategy and Joint Forward Plan
As set out within our Integrated Care Strategy, we want all people of all ages who live and work in Somerset to live healthy and fulfilling lives. We want people to live well for longer, and for Somerset to be a fantastic place to raise families, create employment, and support one another to be the best they can be.
We want communities in Somerset to be supported to create positive and sustainable futures for all people.
Our Health and Care Strategy and Joint Forward Plan set out how we will build on the foundations already laid, and is our commitment to putting the person at the centre of our thinking and our actions.
What are Integrated Care Systems?
From 1 July 2022 the Somerset ICS has legal status and includes a statutory Integrated Care Partnership (ICP), and a new NHS body called the Integrated Care Board (ICB). The Health and Care Act 2022 will establish 42 ICSs across England.
An Integrated Care System (ICS) brings together the NHS organisations, councils, and wider partners in a defined geographical area to deliver more joined up approaches to improving health and care outcomes.
ICSs remove barriers between organisations to deliver better, more joined up care for local communities. ICS partners share a common vision to improve health and care, backed by robust operational and financial plans, collective leadership and accountability.
Our health is affected by many things – for example lifestyle choices, housing, educational opportunities, unemployment, and poverty. ICSs have the potential to drive improvements in population health and tackle health inequalities by reaching beyond the NHS to work alongside local authorities and other partners to address these wider social and economic determinants of health.
Integrated care is about giving people the support they need, joined up across local councils, the NHS, and other partners including social care providers, voluntary and community enterprise sector and charities.
ICS partners have developed better and more convenient services, invested more to keep people healthy and out of hospital and set shared priorities for the future. The importance of integrated working was visible in the strong response to the pandemic and accelerated these changes.
Benefits of ICSs
Collaborating as ICSs will help health and care organisations tackle complex challenges.