Blog post by Phil Swan, Programme Director, Shared Intelligence
Lord Crisp’s call for more hospitals to close is a useful and important contribution to the debate. As the former NHS Chief Executive he knows only too well that there is overcapacity in the hospital sector and that closing some would free up funds for community services.
The Bournemouth,Dorsetand Poole Total Place Pilot (which looked at services for older people and for which I was project director) proved this beyond doubt. The data we collected showed that about a third of older people in hospital need not be there and that their needs could be met far more cheaply at or near their homes. The challenge was a leadership one – to make the positive case for closing hospitals.
An important question for local councils and their partners is whether Health and Wellbeing Boards will have the leadership capacity and bravery to make this case.