The new health and care system became fully operational on 1 April to deliver the ambitions set out in the Health and Social Care Act. NHS England, Public Health England, the NHS Trust Development Authority and Health Education England have now taken on their full range of responsibilities.
Locally, clinical commissioning groups – made up of doctors, nurses and other professionals – buy services for patients, while local councils formally take on their new roles in promoting public health. Health and wellbeing boards will bring together local organisations to work in partnership and Healthwatch will provide a powerful voice for patients and local communities.
The Health and Social Care System explained provides a good guide to the changes and useful links to the organisations in the system.
A PDF guide to the Healthcare system in England has also been published in May, this guide explains organisations in the healthcare system and how they work together and includes the Statement of NHS Accountability.
The Guide to the Healthcare System in England covers:
- providing care
- commissioning care
- safeguarding patients
- empowering patients and local communities
- education and training
- supporting providers of care
- the role of the Secretary of State for Health
The accountability statement explains how decision making works in the NHS and fulfils the commitment set out in principle 7 of the NHS Constitution.