Our priorities

We’ve identified a number of priorities that will help to improve health and wellbeing here in Tower Hamlets. These priorities are grouped into three main areas

Improving services for children and young people
Improving services for adults, particularly those with a long-term health condition or who are vulnerable to illness
A focus on prevention and supporting people to lead a healthy life
Improving services for children and young people
Improving services for adults, particularly those with a long-term health condition or who are vulnerable to illness

A focus on prevention and supporting people to lead a healthy life

Our priorities

We’ve identified a number of priorities that will help to improve health and wellbeing here in Tower Hamlets. These priorities are grouped into three main areas

Improving services for children and young people
Improving services for adults, particularly those with a long-term health condition or who are vulnerable to illness
A focus on prevention and supporting people to lead a healthy life

A key theme relating to all three of these priority areas is about reducing the need for people to be treated in hospital by better supporting them to stay healthy and managing their health in the community, making for a more efficient and convenient way to provide care and treatment.

A key theme relating to all three of these priority areas is about reducing the need for people to be treated in hospital by better supporting them to stay healthy and managing their health in the community, making for a more efficient and convenient way to provide care and treatment.

Improving the health and wellbeing of children and young people

We believe that every child should have the best possible start in life. By focusing more on preventing them from becoming ill, whilst providing access to high quality, better coordinated services, we hope to improve physical, social, emotional and cognitive development, improve life-long health and wellbeing and ease the effects of deprivation.

We will achieve this by:

 

  • Developing stronger links between health, childcare, education, social care, voluntary and community sectors, in order to improve accessibility, quality and effectiveness
  • Involving families in designing health and care services to ensure they are responsive to their needs
  • Strengthening health promotion and education across all services to support healthy behaviours and habits and reduce the risk of preventable harm, with a particular focus on the six ‘high impact areas’ for young children which are:
  1. maternal mental health
  2. infant feeding
  3. healthy weight and oral health
  4. two-year integrated review and support to be ‘ready for school’
  5. managing minor illness
  6. reducing accidents (reducing hospital attendance/admissions)
  • Improve the early identification of disabilities and health conditions, delays in child development, adverse social conditions (including neglect, abuse and domestic violence) to ensure children receive timely and effective specialist services and support as required
  • Improve early diagnosis and better integrated support for children with special educational needs and disabilities to help families and children to become more independent

Improving the health and wellbeing of children and young people

We believe that every child should have the best possible start in life. By focusing more on preventing them from becoming ill, whilst providing access to high quality, better coordinated services, we hope to improve physical, social, emotional and cognitive development, improve life-long health and wellbeing and ease the effects of deprivation.

We will achieve this by:

  • Developing stronger links between health, childcare, education, social care, voluntary and community sectors, in order to improve accessibility, quality and effectiveness
  • Involving families in designing health and care services to ensure they are responsive to their needs
  • Strengthening health promotion and education across all services to support healthy behaviours and habits and reduce the risk of preventable harm, with a particular focus on the six ‘high impact areas’ for young children which are:
  1. maternal mental health
  2. infant feeding
  3. healthy weight and oral health
  4. two-year integrated review and support to be ‘ready for school’
  5. managing minor illness
  6. reducing accidents (reducing hospital attendance/admissions)
  • Improve the early identification of disabilities and health conditions, delays in child development, adverse social conditions (including neglect, abuse and domestic violence) to ensure children receive timely and effective specialist services and support as required
  • Improve early diagnosis and better integrated support for children with special educational needs and disabilities to help families and children to become more independent

Improving the health and wellbeing for adults, particularly those with a long-term health condition or who are vulnerable to illness

In terms of improving health and wellbeing amongst adults, we aim to simplify and enhance the way care is provided by:
  • having a single point of contact for all care needs
  • being able to respond rapidly to patients with an urgent health problem to prevent their condition worsening and them needing to be admitted to hospital
  • increasing awareness of and improving access to health, social care and wellbeing support
  • reducing duplication across services and improving the way information is shared between those providing care by taking a multidisciplinary approach covering both physical and mental health and wellbeing
  • supporting people’s preferences for where they receive care and treatment, with a focus on providing care as close to home as possible
  • reducing the frequency and length of stay of hospital admissions
  • improved care for people in the last years of their life

A focus on preventing people from falling ill by supporting them to lead a healthy life

Improving population health and wellbeing is the underlying principle of Tower Hamlets Together. We want to help people feel in control of their own health and wellbeing and be able to lead the healthiest life possible.

Our approach means ensuring opportunities are taken at any time during a person’s care to prevent ill health, as outlined below:

  • Integrating wider support into services – we know that supporting people to stay healthy includes addressing broader issues such as the availability of cheap, high calorie food or high levels of unemployment. Whilst some of this activity is outside the direct influence of Tower Hamlets Together, we will consider how we can contribute towards taking action on these issues together. For example, social prescribing, which is a way of linking patients in primary care with sources of support within the community, is being introduced into all GP practices. This mean that patients can be directed to support for issues such as education, training and employment and loneliness. We are also exploring the use of innovative community settings such as our libraries to deliver similar support for residents.
  • Seeking to prevent the onset of specific diseases or other demands on the health and care system by addressing their risk factors, such as smoking or low levels of active behaviour. For example, the ‘Make Every Contact Count’ programme will give front-line health and social care staff the skills to raise issues such as these with their patients and clients. Also, we will work closely with existing staff groups who have prevention at the core of their work, to help people make healthy lifestyle choices. In addition, we will seek to address health and care needs at an earlier stage so they can be managed more effectively and slow the speed of progression, such as cancer screening.
  • Taking action to manage health and care needs once they have arisen to minimise their impact on quality of life, such as cardiac rehabilitation for people diagnosed with heart disease.