Stakeholder News

Black Country and West Birmingham Sustainability and Transformation Partnership

Welcome to the latest edition of 'Stakeholder News' from the Black Country and West Birmingham Sustainability and Transformation Partnership (STP). The STP is a partnership of 18 health and care organisations that share a vision to improve the life expectations of the diverse communities in the Black Country and West Birmingham. It includes local authorities, hospitals and other health providers and our local clinical commissioners. To find out more about our partnership go to our dedicated web page.

Helen's Blog

Following our Long Term Plan special edition newsletter last month, I am pleased to share that our five-year plan for improving the health and wellbeing of people in the Black Country and West Birmingham is in the final stages of development. 

On behalf of the Partnership Board, I want to take this opportunity to thank all those who have contributed to the development of our plan, especially our staff and Healthwatch colleagues who helped us to seek the views of local people.

Whilst the sensitive period in the run-up to the general election will impact our ability to share our plan at the moment, we will continue to be open and transparent about the challenges that face our local health and care system and will share it with you as soon as we are able to do so.

Our collective commitment to integrating health and care services underpins a lot of the work we are doing across the local system. This is particularly true for our four CCGs, who will continue to develop their collaborative working arrangements under the leadership of Paul Maubach. For the interim, my role as Senior Responsible Officer for the Black Country and West Birmingham STP will continue, and I remain committed as ever to leading our health and care partnership.

A key focus for us now is planning the best way of responding to winter pressures whilst protecting the standards of service, which patients expect. Over the last few months, we have been working closely with partners to ensure there is enough capacity to meet the predicted rise of people admitted to hospitals. This also includes supporting local people to access the most appropriate service for their condition - in which a joint communications approach has been agreed across our urgent and emergency care system so that we can deliver consistent and timely messages to people in the Black Country and West Birmingham. Visit our Twitter account @HealthierBCWB for more information.

Preparing for winter is something that all health and care staff can get involved in, and an important way to do this is by getting the flu jab. After having mine a few weeks ago, I encourage all staff to get vaccinated and protect yourself, your work colleagues, your patients and your families from the effects of flu.


Taking 111 to the next level

Plans that will eventually see the full integration of the 999 and 111 services in the West Midlands (except Staffordshire) have taken an important step forward with the 111 service transferring to West Midlands Ambulance Service. The change, which took place at noon on 5th November 2019, is the first step of a process that will lead to significant improvements for patient care through fully integrating NHS urgent and emergency care services. The new service will see fewer patients being sent ambulances and lead to a reduction in the number of patients asked to attend A&E.

Instead, the new model will support more patients being cared for in the most appropriate place for their needs. This will also include more patients being provided with care over the phone by a team including GPs; advanced nurse practitioners; community mental health teams; pharmacists, dental nurses, paramedics and midwives. More calls will also be diverted to GPs (in and out of hours), urgent treatment centres and rapid response services operated in the community. Click here for full details.

Personal Health Budgets

A change in law means people who use wheelchairs or need mental health support will have greater choice and control in managing their own health and care in future. From 2 December 2019, everyone eligible for an NHS wheelchair and people who require aftercare services under section 117 of the Mental Health Act will have access to a personal health budget. Last year DHSC and NHS England consulted on extending the right to a personal health budget. The consultation revealed strong support, with nearly 9 out of 10 respondents supporting the proposals.

Personal health budgets are planned and agreed between individuals and clinicians, giving people greater choice, flexibility and control over their health and care support. Nationally, more than 70,000 people are already benefiting from personal health budgets, helping people with complex needs stay healthy and independent for longer. A personal health budget could be spent on:

  • specially adapted wheelchairs designed to maximise independence
  • a choice of personal care assistants who can be trained to meet the individual’s needs
  • exercise classes to help maintain a healthy lifestyle, gain confidence and reduce stress

All four Black Country CCGs (Dudley, Walsall, Wolverhampton, Sandwell and West Birmingham) already offer Personal Health Budgets (PHBs) to patients in Continuing Health Care, for wheelchair users and for those who are subject to section 117 aftercare. In addition, we are also providing PHBs for High Intensity Users, and have an arrangement in place with National Express to offer  bus passes with a PHB for patients on a section 117. This makes it easier for patients to access services across the STP.

All four Black Country CCGs will be compliant with the new legislation by the time it comes into effect. By the end of Q2 2019, the four CCGs had a combined 1143 PHBs in place and this is expected to rise to over 1500 before the end of the year.

Sandwell and West Birmingham wins prestigious national diabetes award

Sandwell & West Birmingham NHS Trust initiative “Implementation of a National Guideline with Local Changes: Does an Abbreviated Adult Diabetic Ketoacidosis (DKA) Protocol Improve Local Uptake and Overall Clinical Care?” was triumphed at a prestigious national diabetes awards.

The initiative triumphed in the Type 1 Specialist Service Adult category at the 2019 Quality in Care (QiC) Diabetes Awards, which were held on Thursday 17 October at Sanofi UK headquarters.

This category recognises initiatives that deliver specialist support for children, young people and emerging adults, and adults with type 1 diabetes, and have demonstrated positive impact on the diagnosis and management of type 1 diabetes and associated secondary complications.

The Judges commented: “Sandwell & West Birmingham NHS Trust have produced a very simple but very impressive project. The step by step protocol allows underlying causes, as well as treatment of DKA, to be identified, which will help practitioners improve care. The project generated compelling positive feedback from users, suggesting that its clinical impact could be significant. Already in routine practice, the sustainability of the programme is clear, with evidence of its adoption in other localities.”

NICE publishes STP Respiratory resource

NICE has recently published a respiratory resource for local partnerships: Respiratory conditions: reducing pressure on emergency hospital services. The resource has been developed with input from other national organisations and programmes including Public Health England and NHS RightCare and includes links to local health intelligence to support you with identifying key areas where improvement is needed.  This fits with the population health management approach that many local partnerships are now taking.

The resource provides links to the key NICE guidance and quality standards that can help address issues by informing quality improvement and system transformation. By describing what works and what is cost effective, you can be confident that the interventions recommended by NICE will help you to achieve good outcomes for your population. Case studies of how other places have successfully implemented NICE recommendations are also included.

The NICE respiratory resource for STPs/ICSs focuses on improved prevention and rapid and accurate diagnosis and management, including improved access to pulmonary rehabilitation as outlined in the NHS long term plan. It also addresses issues such as personalised care and mental wellbeing, and winter pressures.

Click here for an overview. For more information on this or any other STP resource in the suite please contact, NICE field team (Midlands and East).

WMAHSN offering subsidised tickets to LfE3 

Following the huge success of last year's event, the West Midlands Academic Health Science Network (WMAHSN) are delighted to support another Learning from Excellence (LfE) Community Event, and are offering our stakeholders the opportunity to attend free of charge.

The event, which is priced at £79 per ticket, will feature updates from the LfE community and an opportunity for delegates to share their LfE-related work, with an overarching theme ‘why language matters’.

We invite you to apply for one of 50 subsidised tickets via Eventbrite – simply tell us how your department or team could benefit from attending, and how you could implement LfE.

LfE 3 - Friday 7 February 2020  I  9am - 5pm
Mercian Suite, Birmingham Conference and Events Centre, B5 4EW
Deadline to apply: Friday 15th November
Notification Date: Friday 29th November

Health Inequalities Menu of Interventions and Approaches

The NHS Long Term Plan (LTP) sets out specific ambitions for the NHS to take a ‘more concerted and systematic approach to reducing health inequalities’ In support of this ambition, NHS England, collaborating with Public Health England (PHE) and partners in the voluntary and community sector and local government, has worked to develop a ‘menu of evidence-based interventions for addressing health inequalities – (Menu).

The phase one of the Menu has been published today (23rd October 2019) on the NHS England website. The Menu provides a catalogue of interventions and approaches that local healthcare systems and commissioners, working with partners across the system, can draw upon to take effective action at neighbourhood, place and system-level to reduce health inequalities, through their local improvement plans.

The Menu complements the content of the Place Based Approaches for Reducing Health Inequalities (PBA), which was published by Public Health England on the 29th July 2019.

Sarah Sweeney, Policy and Communications Manager at Friends Families and Travelers welcomes the launch of the Menu: “We are proud participants in the working group for the development of the Menu and we hope that it will help local areas to strengthen action on tackling health inequalities. During further development of the Menu we are eager to work with voluntary sector organisations to encourage submissions and to highlight the immense contribution voluntary sector organisations make in addressing health inequalities.”

Neil Churchill, Director of Experience, Participation and Equalities at NHS England/Improvement highlights the importance of the Menu: “The publication of the Menu will help systems in their planning and delivery of the ambitions set out in the Long-Term Plan. It is particularly heartening to see the Menu has been developed in conjunction with key partners including the voluntary sector and they have a key role in supporting delivery at a local level”

The Menu is being developed through a phased approach, which will run through the life of the NHS Long Term Plan. The Menu will also enable NHS England / NHS Improvement to identify where there are gaps in evidence and to further develop or commission work to fill these gaps.

The Menu is available online on the NHS England/ NHS Improvement website.

Submissions are welcome for Phase 2 of the menu. If you want to contact us about this work, or you want to share evidence with us, please email the Menu planning team on:

Midlands PHM Academy Webinars

Following the success of our summer webinar series (and a number of requests from academy attendees) we have lined up our faculty to run a second series on Core Skills for Population Health Management. Please follow the links to register and do join as many as you can.

Fraser Battye on Logic Models: 13th November 2019, 11:00-12:00
Dr Abeda Mulla on Qualitative Methods: 25th November 2019, 11:00-12:00
Belinda Weir on Systems Leadership: 3rd December 2019, 10:00-11:00
Alison Turner on Using Evidence: 18th December 2019, 15:30-16:30
All webinars will also be recorded and shared on the PHM Academy website.

NHS England Blogs

How we’ve put personalised care front and centre of our wheelchair services
East Riding Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) commissioner Sally Smith shares her experiences, ahead of changes in the law which will soon make personal wheelchair budgets a legal right for wheelchair users..

Developing leaders across systems
The Senior Medical Advisor to the Primary Care Provider Transformation looks at what can make integrated care thrive.

What can the NHS do to improve wellbeing for women?
To mark World Menopause Day, the Implementation Lead for the Elective Care Transformation Programme shares some of the lessons learned in transforming gynaecology services to improve satisfaction and outcomes.

The future of race in the NHS
A member of the Executive Committee of the NHS BME Network marks Black History Month by looking at the need for diversity in the workplace.

Inspiring and challenging: life on the NHS frontline
One young volunteers talks about what it was like to appear in the Big Hospital Experiment programme, which followed the fortunes of 14 young people working in a busy hospital.

Copyright © 2022 Health, All rights reserved.