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Draft v.3 16/11/22

Improving lives together

Our ambition for a healthier future


We want to improve the lives of people living across Sussex now and in the future and will be working differently with our communities to make it happen. We want people to thrive and be the best they can be; to be healthier and feel supported; and to get care from services in the best possible way when needed.


We know this is not happening often enough at the moment, particularly for those who are most disadvantaged across our communities.


Not enough people are being supported to live healthier and to prevent them becoming ill. Too many people are living in poor health. And too many people are waiting too long for treatment and care. This is despite our dedicated health and care staff working tirelessly every day to give the best care they can.


In some areas, this has been the case for many years, but has been made worse by the impact of the pandemic and the current pressures on people’s lives due to the cost-of-living crisis.


A lot of work has already taken place across health and care to make improvements and progress has been made for our population. But this has still not gone far enough for many people and we need to do more.


A lot of the issues we face can only be resolved with long-term change. So we need to think and work differently to make a bigger difference to local people. And this needs a bigger ambition to build on what we have done in the past.


Improving Lives Together represents that ambition.


It is an ambition where people are supported to live healthier at every stage of their lives, have the best services possible available to them when needed, and where staff are better supported to do the best job they can.


To achieve this ambition, we are building on the Health and Wellbeing Strategies we have in place across Brighton and Hove, East Sussex and West Sussex that focus on the priorities we are working on to improve health and wellbeing across our populations.


In addition to this, we have agreed the things that will make the biggest positive difference to people’s lives that can be best achieved by working across the whole of Sussex. These are:


·         A new joined-up community approach to health and care.

·         Growing and developing our workforce.

·         Improving the use digital technology and information.

·         Maximising the power of partnership working.


We now have an opportunity to make our ambition a reality. Some people may ask why we have not done this in the past and what is going to be different this time around.


The difference now is the way we – the organisations responsible for planning, providing, supporting and influencing health and care - are working together.


We will be working differently with and within our local communities and strengthening how our organisations work formally in partnership across our populations in Brighton and Hove, East Sussex and West Sussex, what we call working at “place”.  Place is where our organisations have been working hard to join up care and take action to improve health and reduce health inequalities, coordinated through three Health and Care Partnerships whose work is overseen by Health and Wellbeing Boards. 


About our Health and Wellbeing Boards and Strategies
 There are three Health and Wellbeing Boards in Sussex covering Brighton and Hove, East Sussex and West Sussex. They bring together representation from local government, including borough and district Councils, local NHS organisations, Healthwatch and voluntary, community, social enterprise organisations, and other key public services to assess needs and agree strategies, focussed on improving health, care and the overall social and economic wellbeing of their populations.
 The Health and Wellbeing Board Strategies for Brighton and Hove, East Sussex and West Sussex use local evidence, data and insight to set out the priorities for improving health and wellbeing of their populations, responding to the distinct issues and challenges in these places. These Strategies form the basis for our Sussex-wide ambition. 
 • Brighton and Hove Health and Wellbeing Board Strategy (link to be added) 
 • Healthy lives, healthy people: East Sussex Health and Wellbeing Board Strategy | East Sussex County Council
 • West Sussex County Council Health and Wellbeing Board Strategy (link to be added)
 There are three Health and Care Partnerships that support the HWBS to deliver these Strategies. The additional improvements we want to make in Improving Lives Together aim to support, build on, and accelerate these local priorities.





























We cannot do this alone though and will need local people, our communities, and our staff to play a part in making it happen. We will all need to be committed to making the changes we want to make and help support each other to do so.


By working together in this way we can improve lives now and in the future.


Sussex Health and Care Assembly



Who we are
 The Sussex Health and Care Assembly is a formal joint committee set up between NHS Sussex, Brighton & Hove City Council, East Sussex County Council and West Sussex County Council. Its membership includes representatives from universities, voluntary and community organisations, Healthwatch, further education, housing and local enterprise, across Sussex. You can read more information on the Assembly here.












1.Where we are now: Why we need to change


The majority of people living across Sussex receive good quality support, care and treatment most of the time. Satisfaction rates are still high among those using services and a lot of work has taken place to improve health and care over the last few years that has brought real benefits.


This includes work to give people better and quicker access to the right services when they need them. For example, we are creating more appointments at GP practices and making it easier for people to access them by making appointments available in mornings, evenings and at weekends, and by improving new telephone systems. We have improved how people get urgent care by introducing Urgent Treatment Centres at hospital sites and expanding the 111 service. There has been an expansion of mental health services to include a single point of access service in West Sussex, to go along with that already in place in Brighton and Hove and East Sussex. More is being done to prevent people going to hospitals for care, such as the ‘virtual wards’ we are creating to give people the care they need at homeand to support them to not go into hospital when they don’t need to, and the community diagnostic centres that are being rolled out to provide people with tests, scans and treatments closer to where they live. There has also been greater focus and improvements on how people can manage long-term conditions and on supporting people with their wellbeing.


During the Covid-19 pandemic, all health and care organisations and staff pulled out all the stops and worked together, and with our communities, to rapidly do whatever was needed to keep local people as safe and well as possible. Many of these ways of working together have been maintained and improved to benefit local people, and the partnership working and learning from the pandemic has continued. We successfully rolled out the biggest vaccination programme in history and to date have delivered more than 3.8m jabs to keep people protected thanks to the efforts of health and care staff, and our partners.

Case study: Supporting people at home during Covid
 The Covid Oximetry at Home (CO@Home) and Covid Virtual Ward services were rapidly rolled out from December 2021 as part of the Sussex response to the pandemic. These supported patients to better manage their Covid symptoms at home using simple technologies, that enabled the early identification of deterioration.
 Patients were virtually monitored three times a day and clinical questions from doctors and healthcare professionals sent via a portal, text, email or telephone call.
 Feedback shows that the simple equipment and flexible contact methods made it easy for patients to monitor and report on their health and worked well for patients with learning difficulties, sensory impairment and mental health conditions, as well as those for whom English is not their first language. Across five months, over 2,100 patients were cared for by the services. 












People are telling us things need to change


Despite the good work to improve and maintain people’s health, and health and care services, local people are telling us they are not always getting what they need, when they need it.


We are constantly hearing feedback from individuals, communities and staff and we need to listen, and respond, to what they are saying. A lot of feedback is positive, but we also hear a lot about areas we need to improve. Every person has a different experience and story to tell, but there are common themes people keep telling us:


People say we need to improve access to services


“Getting to see the right service can be slow, inaccessible and makes you reluctant to ask for help. You don’t want to bother emergency services which are already stretched and not the correct first point of call, so you just muddle through and feel unwell.”


People are finding care disjointed care and a confusing ‘system’


“Services can be dis-jointed and appointments often seem unnecessary. Some services could be made much more accessible by being community based.”


“My mother has a complex condition, both mental and physical. The biggest challenge has been dealing with all the different teams, being batted around, and no one really taking responsibility. You don’t want to have to repeat your situation with each person you come into contact with. You can feel like you’re going back to square one.”


“I am carer for my husband who has Alzheimer’s. I struggle to get help as the whole process from diagnosis is too confusing. You end up feeling you have been left to get on with it.”


People need more involvement in their own care


“Someone's health belongs to them, not to the system. A person knows their body and mind best even if they can't diagnose what's wrong. They know what motivates and disincentivises them. A system built around the needs and preferences of an individual is more likely to see that person fully engage with it.”


People need more focus on their individual needs


“I think the thing that gets missed is the individual person - what people actually need for them beyond a one size fits all. That’s where people fall through the gaps.”


People need better access to information


“I know the information I need is out there but I either cannot find or access it. This is a problem that other family members have faced.”

People need support for all aspects of their lives


“I think you should be working with local activity and social groups to help get people out in their local community to show that people can help them.”


We need better support our workforce


“Tackling the issues and supporting local people better can only be done if the workforce is sufficient and encouraged, not stressed to the point of leaving the service or becoming ill themselves.”


“I work in healthcare and don’t really feel I can progress beyond my current role. I’ve done the same thing for many years and would like to develop and learn new skills but I don’t know how best to do it.”

How we have engaged with local people
 We have collated feedback from local people over the last two years to help shape our ambition. This includes:
 • Direct feedback from 18,000 people.
 • Face-to-face and virtual workshops with 420 people.
 • 500 interviews and direct feedback through partners, including Healthwatch.
 • 1,440 survey responses on our ambition priorities.
 • Online engagement that has reached more than 200,000 people across our website, social media and podcasts.
 • 800 individual conversations in public engagement events during the summer and autumn of 2022.
 • Engagement with communities who may experience health inequalities and marginalised groups, working with the voluntary and community sector.















Understanding the reasons behind the need to change


The reason people are not always getting what they need from health and care is largely down to the growing need to use services we are seeing. More people living across Sussex now need more support, care and treatment more often and the services currently available cannot keep up. This is causing some people to get sicker, experience delays and is putting staff under pressure.


We need to understand what the reasons are behind this increase in need so we can tackle them and make improvements.


As Places, Brighton and Hove, East Sussex and West Sussex have unique strengths, assets and challenges in their areas, which contributes to differences in the overall health both between and within their populations. This informs the distinct approaches to addressing population needs - through the way local health and care services are organised, as well as to improve social, economic and other factors that influence people’s health – that are captured in the three Health and Wellbeing Strategies and other local plans. There are also common themes across Sussex that we need to tackle and improve.


Different life factors affecting health


Many factors influence someone’s health and wellbeing, most of which people are unable to control or improve themselves without support. Many different organisations are responsible for influencing these factors and they have not always worked in a joined-up way in the past.

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Growing and ageing population


We have a growing population, with the main reason being more people coming to live in Sussex. We also have an ageing population. This means more people are needing more care and support more often.





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Growing and ageing population in Brighton and Hove
Growing and ageing population in East Sussex
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Diagram  Description automatically generated    Growing and ageing population in West Sussex

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Poor quality of life


Many people are living with long-term illnesses that are affecting their day-to-day lives and need to be better supported to manage their condition. The common causes across all our populations are:


·         Respiratory problems

·         Mental health problems

·         Lower backpain and joint problems

·         Migraines


Health inequalities


There are avoidable and unfair differences in health between different groups of people across Sussex that we need to reduce. There are many reasons for ‘health inequalities’, including employment, where someone lives, income, housing, education, their ethnicity and their personal situation.


People living in more deprived areas have worse health and outcomes and there are big differences in life expectancy across Sussex which matches deprivation. Most deprivation in Sussex is along the coast and in south west Crawley.






Health inequalities in Brighton and Hove
Health inequalities in East Sussex


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Health inequalities in West Sussex

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The impact of Covid and cost-of-living


The Covid pandemic, and the lockdowns we lived through, impacted on people’s health and wellbeing in different ways. As a result, we have seen:


o   More children need support for mental health issues.

o   Increase in alcohol consumption, smoking and obesity among adults.

o   Physical and mental wellbeing of older people have got worse.

o   Waiting times for procedures and treatment have grown.

o   Sicker patients are now coming into hospital.

o   The inequalities that exist were highlighted and made worse for some people.

o   More health and care staff leaving the profession.


The current cost of living crisis is also having an impact on people’s wellbeing and more are likely to need support and care as a result in future.


Why services cannot keep up with the need


There are a number of reasons services are not currently able to always keep up with the growing need. These include:


·         How services are arranged and organised: Services are currently run by different parts of the NHS, local authorities and other organisations and many people need support and care from more than one service at a time. As a result services do not always work seamlessly, which means people often have to repeat their stories which is frustrating, and services can feel disjointed and slow.


·         Over-focus on sickness rather than health: The majority of health and care services are focused on treating and supporting people when they become ill. This is often necessary but there is more that could be done to focus on helping to prevent people becoming ill in the first place.


·         Use of digital technology: We have been developing new ways of using digital technology over the last few years to improve health and care services. But we are still not using it in the best possible way and not tapping into all the benefits it could bring. Most people are now using sophisticated technology in their everyday life, through mobile phones and the internet, but some services are still relying on old technology that does not work very well and does not connect to other services. This means we cannot always provide modern health and care services that you and others rightly expect. 


·         Limited money and facilities available: There is a limited amount of public funding available for health and care and this has an impact on investment in services. There is not enough money available to do everything we may want to do, so we have to get the best value out of the funding we have that will make the biggest difference to local people. We are still using ageing buildings in some areas, which can make it difficult to provide high quality care and experience for people or staff. We now need to think differently around how we can best use the buildings and land we have.


Our workforce challenge


One of the biggest reasons services are not able to keep up with the rising need is related to our workforce. When we talk about our workforce, we are describing those that keep people safe and who deliver care and support, either through paid employment or volunteering. Working in health and care is incredibly rewarding and those that do want to give the best possible care, in the best possible way. They are currently not always able to do this because of the growing pressure on services and the way some services are run. There are three main issues we need to tackle:


·         Retaining our staff: The increasing pressure, and the lasting impact of their efforts during the pandemic, has resulted in some staff being stressed, overworked and tired, which is resulting in more going off sick and leaving health and care professions.


·         Recruitment: We are currently not able to recruit enough health and care professionals to cover vacancies in our services and it takes time to train and develop future staff. Housing is also very expensive in some parts of Sussex, which can mean some staff are not able to afford to live locally and makes it more difficult to recruit and keep a local workforce.


·         Development: We know we are not doing enough to support staff to develop new skills which can be used in the best possible way across different teams and services.


Other areas we need to improve


There are many people who need specific and additional support to help them stay healthy. We have agreed that there are three that we need to give particular collective focus. These are:


The most disadvantaged and vulnerable people and communities

We are committed to improving health and care for everyone living across Sussex, but we will give particular focus to better supporting those who are disadvantaged. These include those who live in areas of deprivation and who experience health inequalities. This includes people living with learning disabilities and autism.


Children and young people

Our early years have a big impact on the health and wellbeing of the rest of our lives. More children are needing help and care, and the issues they have are more complicated and severe than they were. The current services are not always able to meet this growing need, so we need more focus on our children, young people and families, to better support them in all aspects of their lives. This includes the environment where they grow up, their education, and the support around them. We need to give particular focus to children in and leaving care, those who need support to keep them safe, and young people as they become adults.


Unpaid carers

Unpaid carers play an important role and on average have poor health than people who are not carers.Over 10% of adults across Sussex say they provide unpaid care to a relative or friend. Many carers do not get the support they need and we need to help them maintain their own health and that of those they are caring for.


People who feel lonely and live in social isolation

The feeling of being alone and a lack of social connections can have major impacts on someone’s health, how long they live for, and their mental health and wellbeing. This is an issue for people of all ages, but particularly for our elderly population, and we can make a big positive difference by giving them more support.  


2. Where we want to get to: Our ambition for a healthier future


We are taking collective action to respond to what local people are telling us and tackle and improve the issues.


Our ambition is to improve the lives of people living across Sussex by supporting them to live healthier for longer and making sure they get the best possible care and treatment when needed.


To make this a reality, we have four goals we want to achieve:


·         Improve health and health outcomes for local people, especially those who are disadvantaged.

·         Tackling the health inequalities we have.

·         Working better and smarter, and getting the most value out of funding we have.

·         Doing more to support our communities to develop socially and economically.


We will do this by organisations working closer together and differently with and within our communities to support people through each stage of their lives. We want to:


·         Help local people start their lives well by:

o   Improving mother and baby health and wellbeing, especially for those most in need.

o   Creating healthy environments for children, young people and families to grow up in.

o   Supporting parents and carers.

o   Linking health and care up in a better way with education and schools.

o   Supporting good mental health for all children and young people.

o   Better supporting the most vulnerable children and young people, including those in and leaving care, and those who need to be kept safe.


·         Help local people to live their lives well by:

o   Supporting people to look after their own health and wellbeing.

o   Supporting people to live, work and play in places that promote health and wellbeing.

o   Supporting people to know how they can look after themselves better when they do become ill or have a health issue.  

o   Supporting people who have physical disabilities, learning disabilities and mental health conditions, to have good health and joined up care and support, including access to opportunities such as accommodation, housing and employment. 

o   Ensuring more access to services for people who have traditionally been under-served, for example homeless people and other groups


·         Help local people to age well by:

o   Ensuring fewer older people feel lonely or isolated.

o   Helping older people to stay healthy and live independently for longer

o   Reducing the number of older people who suffer falls

o   Helping people receive good quality care at the end of their lives and to die at a place of their choosing.


·         Help local people get the treatment, care and support they need when they do become ill by:

o   Tailoring care to support people in their own homes, or as close to home as possible.

o   Supporting the health and wellbeing of informal carers

o   Giving them access to the most appropriate and best experts and professionals as early as possible that best suits their needs.

o   Giving greater joined-up care and support for people with long-term conditions and a number of health issues

o   Helping to make sure people only need to use health and care services when they really need to.


·         Help our staff to do the best job they can in the best possible working environment by:

o    Supporting our staff better and creating a more diverse, inclusive and healthier working environment.

o    Encouraging and supporting more people to go into health and care professions, particularly young people and students.

o    Developing our staff to give them the skills they need to work more flexibly and progress their career.


3.  What we will do to get there: Making our ambition a reality


We are not starting from scratch as we look to achieve our ambition. Our Health and Wellbeing Board Strategies and other plans outline the collective action being taken forward by our organisations working in partnership in Brighton and Hove, East Sussex and West Sussex, and improvements are taking place all the time to try to meet the immediate needs of local people.


However, by organisations working together across Sussex, we can take bolder long-term action and change that will build on what we are already doing and make a bigger difference to local people.


This involves developing ‘Joined-up Community working’ that aim to better meet the needs of residents needs through health and care organisations working together where they live.  


To support this, there are three ‘success factors’ that we need to develop and improve:


·         Growing and supporting our workforce

·         Improving the use of digital technology and information

·         Maximising the power of partnerships


So how will this work and what difference will it make?


Joined-up Community working


In future, health and care organisations will work in a more joined-up way with and within communities to better understand and respond to their needs. Support and services will be shaped around local people, rather than expect them to fit into the ‘system’. When we say communities, we mean both the local area people live in and also communities that we know people identify with, such as those with the same interest, beliefs, or way of life.


What will be different?


This will involve a very different way of working to how health and care organisations have often worked with communities in the past. There will be three big differences:


·         Greater joined-up working: Joined-up Community Teams of professionals and experts will work together across different organisations and within local communities to tailor support, care and treatment to what local people need. This will involve linking up all the services and organisations that influence someone’s health, care and wellbeing - including primary care (GP services, pharmacy, dental and eye health services), community, mental health and social care services, hospitals, the full range of support provided by local voluntary and community organisations, and wider services such as public health, school and lifelong learning institutions, leisure, housing, environment and support for business.  When someone needs specialist care and treatment, they will be better supported to get it as quickly as possible.


·         Different relationship with communities: We want to change the relationship between health and care organisations and staff providing services and those who are receiving care and treatment. We will work with, rather than ‘doing to’, people and communities to better understand their needs and circumstances, maximise the use of what already works well for them, and find solutions together to issues they face. This will involve greater engagement with local people in how health and care works best for them.


·         Greater involvement of individuals: Local people will be more involved in, and get more support for, their own health, wellbeing and care. People will be given more support to confidently keep themselves healthy and, if they do become ill, help them manage better themselves so they can carry on living a fulfilled life. There will also be more involvement of, and support for, carers so they can stay healthy themselves and can better support the person they are caring for.


We know every community is different so there will not be a one-size fits all approach, and we will particularly focus on those communities who experience poorer health and outcomes.


As well as changes to how services work, this new way of working will have three big differences in how we approach health and care:


·         Bigger focus on all aspects of your life: To make a greater difference to people’s health and wellbeing, we will be focusing more on all the factors that influence someone’s health. This will include doing more to support and contribute to local communities, such as supporting local businesses and employment, working in a more joined-up way with housing and education, and supporting local initiatives that encourage healthy living.  


·         Bigger focus on supporting you to stay healthy: We want to shift more of our effort, resource and expertise into helping people stay healthy and supporting them to continue to live a fulfilled life if they do become ill or have a health issue. This includes more of what we call ‘proactive care’ which focuses more on prevention and not just cure. We will also make sure more people get urgent, emergency and specialist care as early as possible when they need it to avoid their condition getting worse.


·         Bigger focus on our children and young people: We will be focusing more on supporting children, young people and families with every aspect of their lives to help them stay healthy and get the support, care, and access to services they need when they need it. This includes focusing more on support during their early years, working closer together with their school and further education, and providing them with more career opportunities.



Bringing our ambition to life: Case study on Universal Healthcare in Hastings
 The local NHS is currently working with councils, community and voluntary organisations and local people in Hastings to design and develop health and care services and support in the future. A project called ‘Universal Healthcare’ involves a number of community engagement workshops taking place to understand the needs of local people and help shape how local people can be better supported in the long term. We intend to be able to start new ways of working from Spring 2023 and is a good example of the way we want to work with all our communities in future.














Our success factors


We have three success factors – workforce, digital technology and information, and partnership working - that need to be improved and developed. Without these, there will not be enough staff and the right expertise to give local people what they need, and services and organisations will not be able to work in the best way.


Growing and supporting our workforce


We want to support our staff and volunteers to do the best job they can for local people by growing and developing our collective workforce. The number of people working in health and care has increased, but it does not feel like that because there has been an increase in the number of people who need to use services. We need to carry on increasing the numbers of staff but recruiting more is not the only answer. We need to also get the best out of the staff we already have.


There are five key areas we want to achieve:


·         Working as ‘one team’: We want to create a ‘one team’ approach across health and care, as well as the voluntary sector and other professionals, so they can all work together and across different areas to help local people get the support and care they need.


·         A more multi-skilled workforce: We will support staff to better develop new skills and expand the skills they have. This will allow them to work across different disciplines and areas and help staff to have more opportunities to progress in their careers.


·         Creating an inclusive environment: We want to create a more inclusive working environment that recognises diversity and has a workforce that better represents the population they care for.  


·         More recruitment and career opportunities: We will encourage, and make it easier for, more young people and students to have a career in health and care. We will do this by working closer with further education and our local Universities. We want to employ more local people and will give greater focus on providing opportunities for those living in disadvantaged areas.


·         Learning culture: We want to create a culture where people feel valued and supported to develop their skills and expertise at work. We want to take a ‘lifelong learning’ approach where people never stop developing their skills through their career.


Improving the use of digital technology and information


We will be building on the work that has taken place to improve the use of digital technology. This will help staff make better decisions, work better and provide better care. It will also help local people to access services easier, to tell their story once and to have more involvement and control over their own health and care.

There are five key areas we want to achieve:


·         Connecting services: We will better connect information across our different services to help them work in a more joined-up way.


·         Improving technology and sharing data: We will support organisations to improve the way they use technology and how they share data to improve the support, care and treatment they provide.


·         Supporting staff: Staff to have access to the information they need, wherever they are and whenever they need it, to better support the health and care needs of local people.


·         Giving local people information: We will better support local people to access and manage their own health and care information, care preferences and the way in which they wish to interact with those providing services.


·         Supporting people to use technology: We will do more to help people use and know how to use digital technology in the best possible way that will best suit them and their needs. This will help those who do not have regular access to technology, or are unsure how to use it.


Maximising the power of partnerships


In addition to working at a local level across our communities, organisations responsible for influencing health and care will be working closer together and with other organisations for the benefit of local people. There are three key areas we want to achieve:


·         More leadership at “place”: We will strengthen how our organisations can work together formally across our populations in Brighton and Hove, East Sussex and West Sussex focussing on the distinct needs and challenges in our local areas. We call this working at “place” and it is where the local NHS, local government and a wide range of local partners come together to shape and transform health and care, and make the most of the collective resources we have available. We will do this by working in our three Health and Care Partnerships to increase ways to help our staff and volunteers work together to deliver joined-up care, and improve health in our local communities and neighbourhoods. More information can be found at the end of this Strategy about how each place has made a start with this, and what we plan to do next.


·         Working across Sussex: Our new Health and Care Assembly will strengthen how key organisations can work together formally on the complex and challenging issues that are shared across Sussex. This is a new way of working and will mean more organisations will be able to contribute to improving health and care.


·         Greater joined-up of the local NHS: The local NHS will be doing more to join-up services in future. The NHS across Sussex is made up of 1,100 different organisations and we will be supporting them to work in a more seamless way to improve the care and experience of local people and improve how they are run.


Our ambition in summary

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How this will benefit local people and staff


Emily, 13, lives with her mum, brother and cat in an apartment block. She used to like doing gymnastics but gave it up last year and now spends most of her spare time chatting to her friends on social media. She has been feeling quite anxious recently, is having more arguments with her mum and is less keen on going to school than she used to be. What will be different for Emily in future?
 • There will be more health and wellbeing support for her at school.
 • There will be more opportunities for her and her family to be supported by healthy activities, facilities, groups and services where she lives, both virtually and physically. 
 • More and quicker access to health, care and wellbeing services if she does become ill or need support. 
 • She will have more opportunities to make health and care a career choice when she leaves school.
Harpreet, 42, is a mum of two and lives with her husband in an old Victorian terraced house. She is relatively healthy, goes to the gym whenever she can, and hasn’t needed to use health and care services for a long time. She wants to know how she can stay well and, when she does have a health issue, how to get the most appropriate care and support as quickly as possible. What will be different for Harpreet in future?
 • She will be better supported and informed to make her feel more confident at what she and her family can do to stay healthy.
 • Her family will have more access to healthy activities.
 • If she does become ill, she will be able to access the right service for her at a time that is more suitable for her busy life.
 • She will be able to access services, and keep better track of her own health, through digital technology, such as her mobile phone.
Dave, 82, lives alone and has a number of long-term health conditions. His mobility is restricted, he doesn’t go out of his house very often and needs support to travel. He needs care from a number of different professionals and services and his daughter is increasingly looking after him. What will be different for Dave in future?
 • He will have a personalised care and support plan in place so she doesn’t have to repeat her story and the number of contacts she has with services will be reduced. 
 • All the health and care professionals supporting him will know his needs and what is important to him.
 • His daughter will be treated as one of the team supporting Dave and will also be supported herself. 
 • His condition and health will be regularly reviewed to prevent him from deteriorating.
 • If he needs a higher level of care, this will be able to be done in his own home through a ‘virtual ward’ and Urgent Community Response service.
 • He will be supported to have more opportunities to meet other people socially.




































4. How we will get there: Achieving our



Achieving our ambition will need change, with how health and care organisations, services and teams work, and how communities interact with services and are involved in their own health, care and wellbeing.


We want to achieve our ambition over the next five years and we know we will not be able to do everything at once, with some things taking longer than others to get up and running. So we need to be focused on what we can do and when. We will also need to do it in a realistic way, using the funding, staff and facilities we have available. This is alongside all the work that we continue to do every day to improve and maintain the immediate and short-term support, care and treatment local people need.


This will be a big challenge but we need to be ambitious and bold because just doing what we have always done, or what we are doing now, is not going to make the big difference we want and need to make. This will need a collective effort and everyone will need to play their part.


How we will achieve our ambition is something we will be discussing across organisations, staff, and our communities over the coming months.


We will be developing a plan that clearly sets out what actions need to be taken and will be agreeing across organisations how they will need to work differently in the future. We will engage with local people and staff to discuss what will be different for them and how they can play a role in supporting the change.


We will also be setting out how we will measure progress and success to make sure we know whether or not our ambition has become a reality.


How we developed Improving Lives Together


Improving Lives Together has been developed with the input of a large number of people. The Sussex Health and Care Assembly has been established to oversee its development and all representatives have been involved in shaping what it looks like and agreeing the areas we want to focus on.


We have engaged with representatives and experts from NHS organisations, public health, social care, voluntary and community organisations, Healthwatch and other people who have an interest and knowledge of health and care.


We have used a significant amount of feedback from local people and communities from engagement carried out over the last two years and have been testing what we are proposing across our communities over the last six months. The engagement activity and feedback can be read here.


The Health and Wellbeing Strategies that form the basis of our ambition for the future across Brighton and Hove, East Sussex and West Sussex can be read here.


We have also used a range of evidence and supporting information, which has included an assessment of the needs of the local populations. We have an information library that can be read here.


Our ambition responds to a number of national strategies, plans and guidelines, most notably xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx. These can be read here.

Annex: Brighton and Hove


The following section summarises the key areas of focus and plans in Brighton and Hove (to be added)



Annex: East Sussex


The following section summarises the key areas of focus and plans in East Sussex (to be added)




Annex: West Sussex


The following section summarises the key areas of focus and plans in West Sussex (to be added)