• 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 £400,000, as well as a learning and development programme for the participating project teams throughout the 2 years of the programme.
  • Over 2011/13 seven teams worked on projects that aimed to change the relationship between people and health services.

 

 

We know that in order to achieve the best health outcomes and experience, people need to play an active role in their own care and receive support that is responsive to their needs. Closing the Gap through Changing Relationships aimed to transform the dynamic between people who use health services and those who provide them.

To organise health care 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 health care 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 health care 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.

Within the health care system, individuals, teams and services are already making these changes happen. There are many examples of this, including by co-producing health, sharing decision making, supporting self-management, opening access to health records, and creating a culture that welcomes and acts on feedback.

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

An evaluation report is available.