Whatever happened to that ‘Partnership of Purpose’? It’s something the Guernsey Press will revert to in the next few days and weeks, as we take a deeper look into the problems with the responsibilities of the Health & Social Care Committee. The report promoting the concept, taken to the States in 2017, is illuminating in its ambition and financial assumptions.
‘The proposals will change the landscape of health and care – physically, virtually and financially,’ it states.
If nothing changed, the warning was real terms public spending on health and care rising from £193m. in 2017 to £214m. in 10 years. In fact, the recommended cash limit for next year is £212m., a £24m. (12.7% increase) in cash-strapped times, with a warning that things will probably get worse.
The 2017 report also outlined how modelling by two sets of accountants had indicated how transformation could reduce health costs by £8-17m. over that decade. And the Partnership was going to design, build and transition to a sustainable and affordable delivery model, even given long-term fiscal and demographic forecasts.
One thing the report was right about though, was flagging up ‘exceptionally high’ public expectation of health care services. ‘Islanders typically expect a standard and speed of care not experienced elsewhere,’ it said. They still do. But the system is often failing to match those expectations.