Communities are playing an increasingly important role in improving health and meeting the wellbeing needs of people locally, highlighted in part by their role in the response to the Covid-19 pandemic. Integrated care systems (ICSs) need to recognise the role communities can play in improving and sustaining good health, and as part of this they need to seek greater involvement with local voluntary, community and social enterprise (VCSE) groups at the place and neighbourhood level, where the link local communities is at its strongest.
This conference provided an opportunity to discuss the impact of community-led and person-centred approaches to improving health and wellbeing, and explored what more can be done to build on community interventions, assets and solutions that developed as a response to the pandemic.
We also considered the challenges of demonstrating value and of working with communities to assess need and provide services. Delegates also heard from community groups who have worked with others – including their ICS, local health system or local authority – to develop a collaborative approach to tackling health inequalities.
What can I expect from this event?
Informed by presentations from people and teams from local authorities, the VCSE sector and in the NHS, sessions will explore how to:
make the case for the value of community solutions in a system under stress
assess and commission what communities need
make the most of community and social assets
make decisions together with communities
use social prescribing and other approaches to tackle health inequalities at a local level
seize the opportunities of integrated and place-based care to make a difference for communities.
James SandersonDirector of Community Health Services Primary, Community and Personalised Care (PCPC), NHS England
Charles Kwaku-OdoiChief Officer, Caribbean and African Health Network (CAHN)
Merron SimpsonChief Executive, The Health Creation Alliance
Councillor Keith CunliffeDeputy Leader, Wigan Council and Portfolio Holder, Adult Social Care and Health
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