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10-year NHS focus on children and integration welcomed by Together for Short Lives

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Together for Short Lives has welcomed the NHS in England’s decision to include healthy childhoods and integrated and personalised care for people with long-term conditions as key areas of its new long-term plan.

NHS Improvement published details of its approach to developing the new plan on 15 August. The new strategy will set out the NHS’s ambitions for improvement over the next decade. It will also describe how the NHS will meet them over the five years of the £20bn funding settlement, outlined by the government in June.

Working groups are now being set up to develop the NHS’s 10-year plans on healthy childhood and integrated and personalised care for people with long-term conditions, among other areas.

Andy Fletcher, CEO of Together for Short Lives, said:

“I am pleased that the NHS will be focussing on how to improve healthcare for children and better joined-up care for people with long-term conditions as it develops its new 10-year plan. For too long, children with long-term health conditions, including those who need palliative care, have been neglected in major NHS strategies, including the Five Year Forward View and the government’s mandate to the NHS. This has led to planners and funders of NHS care not giving them the priority they deserve, which in turn has produced a postcode lottery of care and support for seriously ill children.

“With our partners across the children’s health and palliative and end of life care sectors, I ask that the NHS works with us to help make sure that its new plan brings about the best possible outcomes for children with life-limiting conditions. This should clearly set out an intention to meet the government’s end of life care choice commitment for children.”

Together for Short Lives will be submitting our views to NHS England on what the 10-year plan should include. It is expected that the plan will be published to coincide with the Chancellor’s Budget in the autumn.

Together for Short Lives has launched a petition calling on the Government to use some of the recent £20 billion NHS funding boost to fund the lifeline services that support seriously ill children and their families.

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