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Our Journey

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Since 2016, the Together We’re Better partnership of health, social care and voluntary sector organisations have been working to improve health and care for the 1.1 million people who live in Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent.

We started this conversation in 2016 with our original Case for Change and this was followed later in the year by a series of engagement events led by our local Healthwatch partners to capture local peoples’ views on health and social care services. Our What People Have Told Us So Far page outlines examples of the comments received at these events.

At the end of 2016, we published a plan for the health and care to work together better. Over the past few years, our partners have been working closely together through a number of clinically-led work programmes to take this forwards and achieve our collective vision: Working with you to make Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent the healthiest places to live and work.


Public conversation

During summer 2019, we held a clinically-led, 12 week public conversation (listening exercise) to seek views on the local health and care services. As part of the listening exercise we described some of the challenges and opportunities we face locally. You can read more about these challenges on our What is This About? page.

This conversation was the start of our formal involvement process, to help us deliver change across health and social care services. The feedback from the listening exercise will help inform future proposals for service change.

It is important to stress this public conversation was not a consultation, as no options or proposals have been developed.

You can find out more about the feedback we received on our Listening Exercise Report of Findings page.  

Developing a Pre-Consultation Business Case

Please be aware that, due to the current situation around coronavirus (Covid-19) all efforts of local health and care partners are focussed on supporting the frontline.

This means, for a time, other programmes aimed at the long-term transformation of services are being placed on hold.

We will therefore be delaying a number of activities, including the options appraisal process and development of our Pre-Consultation Business Case. Find out more here

Once work can be resumed, the next major milestone is for us to use the feedback you gave us alongside our data analysis and clinical feedback, to develop proposals for service change.

Already we have begun the option appraisal process, which involves our technical experts (including medical directors and clinicians) who will continue to review the list of proposals and refine these into a short-list. This process is temporarily on hold.

We will also organise further workshops with service users, staff and patient groups to help inform the development of proposals.

We will carry out detailed analysis to ensure that any final proposals are viable, both clinically and financially. These will then inform a report called a Pre-Consultation Business Case. This is a detailed report, which outlines the clinical evidence, data analysis and financial considerations.

When the Pre-Consultation Business Case is complete, it will be taken to the Board and Governing Bodies of the six Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) in Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent for discussion. The Pre-Consultation Business Case will then be published on our website.


Independent assurance

We will seek independent clinical assurance from the West Midlands Clinical Senate. The Clinical Senate combines expert clinical leaders with patient involvement and provides proactive and reactive advice across the health care system for the benefit of improved patient outcomes and population health.

The report will also undergo a rigorous Assurance Process review by NHS England.

The outcome of these stages will determine whether formal public consultation is required. Should this be necessary, a comprehensive public consultation exercise would be held enabling local communities to have their say on local health and care services.