The experience of the pandemic, and the adjustments as we learn to 'live with' COVID-19 have accelerated a trend across the health and care sector for providers to work more collaboratively together, to streamline support and communications for patients, and to improve pathways. The new Health and Care Bill will shortly solidify the most significant structural reforms in a decade, placing ICSs on a statutory footing and formally removing the competition encouraged by the 2012 Health and Social Care Act.

NHS Providers is keen to mirror the partnerships our members are forming at the frontline within neighbourhoods, at place and at a system and multi-ICS levels, recognising that these partnerships take many different forms across the country. We are delighted to benefitting from the expertise of the At Scale Primary Care Networking Group in a new partnership, with the support of NHS England and NHS Improvement. We hope that this first joint briefing focused on how primary care and secondary care can work together to reduce the backlog of care generated by the pandemic, and support patients during this time, is a beneficial contribution. We look forward to developing further outputs together.