Vision and Objectives
It is our priority, working with partners, to ensure Worcestershire residents are healthier, live longer, have a better quality of life and remain independent for as long as possible.
We will work together with partners and communities to enable Worcestershire residents to make responsible choices when planning their lives to achieve the best possible outcomes. We will enable individuals to become or remain independent, self-reliant and an integrated part of their local communities.
Promoting healthy and active lifestyles
Health and well-being is influenced by a range of factors over the course of people’s lives. They are related to people’s surroundings and communities as well as their own behaviours. Collectively, these factors have a much greater impact on health and well-being than health and social care services.
Adopting a healthy and active lifestyle is a personal responsibility which starts with individuals making responsible choices as part of their general life planning. As individuals (where we have the capacity to do so) we should be proactive about improving our own health rather than expecting others to decide and provide services on our behalf to fix the effects of unhealthy lifestyles.
Individuals and families have a responsibility for their own life planning, from ensuring the best possible start in life, through education and providing a safe and stable environment for children and young people to thrive, through to championing the benefits of prosperity and employment. This responsibility continues into planning for life after work and into retirement.
Being inactive is a major cause of ill health throughout life - including heart disease, diabetes and some cancers. The negative health impact of being inactive is both avoidable and in some cases reversible.
Wherever possible we will enable individuals and families to take responsibility and improve their own health and well-being by improving access to information, advice and guidance so that responsible choices are made, leading to improved outcomes and healthier lives.
Our natural environment, green spaces and areas of outstanding natural beauty - including riverside locations and canal networks with towpaths - offer numerous walking, cycling and recreational options across the county and will be promoted as providing accessible opportunities for better health.
We will also continue to support and promote the “Worcestershire Works Well” initiative which supports businesses to improve the health and well being of their employees. Improved health and well-being has been shown repeatedly to improve profitability and productivity of businesses.
Enabling vulnerable people to live as independently and safely as possible with the support of their families, friends and communities
Our focus for Adult Social Care is to keep people with care and support needs and those that support them as independent as possible, and to enable them to have as much choice as possible about how they live their lives.
As a Council, this may mean we provide care services but it will also involve us ensuring that there are good quality care providers locally, recognising our market-shaping responsibilities for Worcestershire residents.
We are keen to see people supported in their own communities, and will seek to increase the number of people in supported living arrangements or extra care arrangements, which provide all the benefits of independent living in an owned or rented home but with flexible home care support available on site, if and when required.
We will invest in supported living accommodation units and the provision of extra care housing for older people recognising the improved outcomes they deliver to those people with care and support needs, enabling them to maintain their independence and avoid the use of institutional care provision, as much as possible.
We recognise that carers play a vital role in society and we will continue to support them by working closely with the Worcestershire Carers’ Association. We will ensure that good quality, accessible information and advice is readily available through our website “Your Life Your Choice”, which was visited by more than 25,000 visitors in 2015/16.
We will work with health service leaders at both a strategic and operational level to support the NHS reform in developing new care models which will enable more people to receive treatment and support closer to home, recognising that some of the challenges being faced are just too vast to be tackled by single organisations in isolation, and instead would be better and more effectively solved in partnership.
We recognise that people are better supported where NHS and social care staff work closely together and we will continue to develop health and care services on this basis, focusing on service delivery and partnerships to avoid historical constraints around organisational boundaries.
Continue to work with partners to make sure all health and social care services are evidence based, effective, and good value for money
We are committed to working with partners in realising our ambition to improve the health and social care system in Worcestershire and to make it work more effectively and efficiently for residents.
We will ensure social care and public health work closely with the health economy and other local government services, as well as third sector organisations and local communities.
We will draw on the evidence of what works best when developing strategies and plans for action, prioritising evidence-based prevention. We will ensure that services and resources are measured for effectiveness to improve the quality and value for money of health and social care and to make sure that prevention is embedded in care planning.
How will we judge progress?
- Increase in healthy life expectancy
- Increase in the number of active residents (30 mins exercise per day)
- Increase in the number of people aged 65 or more living independently for longer
- Minimising the number of people who need to go into permanent/residential nursing placements