Report on health and care transformation plots progress

Work to transform the Island’s health and care system so it is sustainable long-term and can meet the population’s needs now and in the future, has made good progress during a year of unprecedented challenge. 

The first Annual Report from the Health and Care Transformation Programme sets out the strides taken towards achieving Sir Jonathan Michael’s recommendations for far-reaching change in his landmark review. The report, to be laid in Tynwald this week (21 July), outlines the progress already made and the foundations for the future. It acknowledges that the coronavirus pandemic has impacted the Programme’s timetable, but has enabled new and flexible ways of working across health and care which will help to achieve the long-term vision. 

Since the report was drafted in May 2020, the Programme’s key stakeholders have re-engaged across a number of work streams as the pandemic situation has eased. A Key Milestone Plan has also been published, which sets out a high-level roadmap leading to April 2021 when Manx Care, the new organisation responsible for delivering all health and care services, will go live. Work will continue after this landmark is passed, to build a high quality, sustainable health and care service for the Isle of Man.   

Health and Social Care Minister David Ashford said: ‘The wheels of change have been well and truly oiled as our health and care services responded to the pandemic. It is hardly surprising that this has meant some disruption to the programme’s plans and resources in the short term, but I am satisfied it is moving forward at a good pace.’ 

He adds: ‘I can see how experience gained facing an extraordinary challenge will assist the process of transformation. We provided responsive, integrated services to meet immediate needs, and will take this confidence and ‘can-do’ approach with us.’ 

The Annual Report outlines key principles and goals for the programme. These include development of high quality, efficient, person-centred health and care services, to be provided at the right time as locally as possible.   

Underpinning the transformation drive is the pressing need to create a system which is sustainable in the long term, both clinically and financially. 

To achieve this, a substantial restructuring of the Island’s heath and care system is underway, including the creation of Manx Care, a new organisation which will be responsible for the delivery of all health and care services. 

The report confirms progress is on track for the new body to go live in April 2021, forging an historic separation from DHSC, which will set policy and strategy. 

Elsewhere, complex work in agreeing funding arrangements has progressed, while a series of service-by-service reviews continues to find the best future models of care. The Public Health team is now positioned to ensure health issues are considered in all areas of government policy, after the Directorate re located to the Cabinet Office in April. 

This week also sees the high-profile post of Chief Executive Officer for Manx Care widely advertised. This follows the recent recruitment drive for the non-executive Chair of Manx Care, which attracted a number of strong candidates. 

As leader of the organisation on a day-to-day basis, Manx Care’s CEO must be capable of inspiring others and driving action to realise the vision for change and improvement.   

Experience leading an organisation through a major period of change while nurturing a positive workplace culture are key attributes, and a comprehensive job description sets out the strategic and operational skillset required for the role.

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