The Health Foundation is an independent charity working to continuously improve the quality of heatlhcare in the UK

Closing the Gap through Changing Relationships

In brief

Closing the Gap is our improvement programme dedicated to bridging the gap between best practice and routine delivery of care.

Successful applicants were provided with around £400k, as well as a learning and development programme for the participating project teams throughout the 2 years of the programme.

Closing the Gap through Changing Relationships

Over 2011/13 seven teams worked on projects that aimed to change the relationship between people and health services.

To organise healthcare services around the needs of the people using them, the Health Foundation believes there needs to be a shift in philosophy, culture and behaviour in three key relationships:

  • Between communities and the wider healthcare system. Services do not always take account of local community factors such as cultural expectations, knowledge, language and access, meaning there can be a gap between the services provided and what communities actually need.
  • Between the person using services and the wider healthcare system. The responsibility to ‘join up’ services is frequently with the user rather than the service provider.
  • Between the individual and health providers. Effective interactions require both parties to have a shared understanding of purpose and process.
Would this include any arts based projects as I have worked in a Hospice for some years and the degree of dissatisfaction with the hospital services were never to go back there attitude or not ready for a hospice attitude. I could see both sides as I am aware of the benefits gained if people engaged with the Hospice care but again it was getting the message across along with the benefits of hospital and understanding that peopel do want to stay at home and institutions are not for everyone. By offering people a different dialogue and form of communication through art to gain a greater self esteem and confidence to voice their opinions through a different medium could be of benefit within their home?
The programme attracted over 140 applications from a variety of sectors across the UK. The focus of the proposals was almost as varied as the organisations that they came from. We did receive proposals for projects which included art. The applications received were reviewed by a series of external assessors but unfortunately none of the arts based proposals were funded. In total eight projects were funded and more information about their progress will be added to the website over the coming months.
We as church and registered charity operate a child bereavement service called Eclipse. We receive referrals from schools for children who have been bereaved through a whole range of circumstances including suicide. We also carry out training for teachers and school nurses etc in how to support children suffering from the impact of bereavement. The outcomes are that non attenders at school quickly return , sleeping and general well being steadily improves , there are many testimonies to the positive impact this service has had from head teachers and families that have benefited from the service. we have two full time counselors and a growing waiting list together with cuts in funding due to the demise of the Community & learning Partnership scheme. Would this service be considered as a project especially as we are launching a specific project to tackle specifically the situations where traumatic circumstances surround the bereavement such as suicide.
The Health Foundation's Closing the Gap award scheme is an annual award scheme which has a different focus each year. The 2011 / 2012 focus was on aligning corporate and clinical services behind a shared goal of improving patient services and was launched as "Shared Purpose". Further details from the Shared Purpose page of this website. The deadline for applications is noon on 4 January 2012.
Why not use exisiting groups to help with this - Maternity Services Liaison Committees do this role. We bring together the commissioners, providers and lay representatives to discuss and improve maternity services.

I am Lay Chair of the West Essex MSLC and we are a very active group who have made significant improvements to maternity services in West Essex

I feel concerned that no-one has realised that we are here...we are ideal for closing the gap in maternity services - in fact that is what we do!
Thanks for your comment Phillippa. The M(ums) Power project which is involved in our Closing the Gap award scheme is focused on maternity services. I will be in touch directly with details of the project so you can make contact if you would find this useful to link up with them.
Post a comment
Back to top