Spend on health set

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PLANS for health spending in North Tyneside over the next year will focus on reducing unplanned hospital admissions and improving care closer to home.

The North Tyneside locality delivery plan, jointly developed by North Tyneside Primary Care Trust (PCT) and the two emerging GP consortia, Care First and Engage Health, outlines the key actions and projects to be led by the consortia in 2011-12.

Schemes to reduce emergency admissions to hospital by building on falls prevention work, providing more care for sick children at home and working more closely with care homes are all included in the plan.

Dr John Matthews, GP lead for CareFirst consortia, said: “We’re planning schemes which will result in better end of life care and better care in the community for people with long term health conditions, such as chronic obstructive pulmonary disease or diabetes.

“We are also looking at ways of reducing referrals to hospital for planned care by providing more services in surgeries and providing more care at home for patients after discharge from hospital.”

North Tyneside PCT, as the current statutory body responsible for health spending, and the GP consortia for the borough together commission health services for a population of 215,000, with a total budget of £305m.

Delivery of the locality plan will be led by GPs working in partnership with local NHS organisations, the three local authorities and the community and voluntary sector.

Chris Reed, chief executive of NHS North of Tyne, added: “These plans build on our five-year strategic plan launched in 2009, which aims to help tackle the long term health challenges of ill-health and early death which face our population.”

Plans and strategies are available online from www.northoftyne.nhs.uk

Mr Reed added: “We are placing much greater emphasis on prevention, early diagnosis and faster detection of ill-health and better access to the right services when people need them.

“Overall, we are aiming to provide more healthcare closer to where people live and avoid unnecessary referrals to hospital which will be supported in local areas through schemes being led by GPs.”