Our offer of support to help system partners forge collaborative relationships

Miriam Deakin profile picture

17 January 2020

Miriam Deakin
Director of Policy and Strategy


NHS Providers has teamed up with the Local Government Association (LGA), NHS Clinical Commissioners (NHSCC), and NHS Confederation to develop a uniquely sector-led peer support offer for sustainability and transformation partnerships (STPs) and local systems which voluntarily seek help from within the sector.

We are offering a menu of peer support tailored to the needs of your local partnerships. This includes 1-2-1 peer mentoring, peer-facilitated workshops and a peer review of your system working plans. Our support is specifically designed to help those who voluntarily seek help from within the sector and is free to all systems.

We focus particularly on helping system partners to forge new collaborative relationships, build shared understanding and agree next steps. Our offer of support is based on using senior, experienced and credible peers, who either work within the NHS and social care organisations, or have very recent experience of leading and supporting local system working. It builds on extensive use of sector-led improvement approaches within local government, developed by the LGA.

Our offer of support is based on using senior, experienced and credible peers who either work within the NHS and social care organisations, or have very recent experience of leading and supporting local system working. It builds on extensive use of sector-led improvement approaches within local government, developed by the LGA.

Miriam Deakin    Director of Policy and Strategy

 

How systems have benefitted so far

Participants of the programme have particularly valued the flexibility of the offer which allows local systems to define their own boundaries, whether this is on the STP/ICS/wellbeing board footprint or place-based. The opportunity to strengthen local relationships across the whole  health and care system  provides a space to share ideas and work through the difficult issues in a confidential setting with the benefit of experienced peers.

 

Peer review case study

We were pleased to support a peer review involving leaders from across West Yorkshire and Harrogate (WY&H) Health and Care Partnership. The review took place over four days and was designed to support local organisations to take collective responsibility for system performance and become a self-governing partnership as part of their progression to full integrated care system (ICS) status. The focus of this first review was the Wakefield place, looking at the progress it was making towards integration and making recommendations for improvement.

A peer review team was put together mixing experienced external stakeholders with internal reviewers from WY&H. The peer review team worked as critical friends, considering a range of perspectives in evidencing key lines of inquiry and comparing the partners’ self-assessment with what they read, heard and saw while on-site.

Local partners felt the peer review had added real value and been timely in their development journey. The self-assessment was seen to provide a valuable opportunity to reflect on their performance, with the peer feedback providing a fresh perspective. In many of the sessions new ideas and reflections emerged as a result of the process. The review also deepened partners understanding of one another, strengthened relationships and enabled good practice and learning to be shared.

WY&H have now replicated this process themselves and have run a second peer review in the Kirklees place - demonstrating how peer challenge can be used to develop a culture of mutual challenge and learning across an ICS to accelerate the pace of integration.

We hope that our peer support offer will provide system leaders with the chance to learn from others who have solved similar challenges. It also gives teams the time to step back and consider how to innovate and work in new ways to deliver agreed priorities. If you or your system leaders have any feedback that might be helpful to the programme or would like to discuss a bespoke package please get in touch.

To find out more about how we can work with your local system visit the peer support offer page or contact Marcus Coulson, programme manager at the Local Government Association via email marcus.coulson@local.gov.uk

About the author

Miriam Deakin profile picture

Miriam Deakin
Director of Policy and Strategy
@MiriamDeakin

Miriam is our director of policy and strategy and is currently leading our programme of work on sustainability and transformation partnerships and accountable care to inform our influencing activities on trusts’ behalf and ensure we are offering the support that trusts and their partners need to deliver new, collaborative arrangements. Read more

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