Simon Stevens shared his view from the helm of NHS England/Improvement in his keynote address at Confed19 in Manchester.
In his sixth appearance at Confed conference, he highlighted the successes of the past 12 months and where progress still needs to be made. While the NHS has seen 780,000 more A&E patients within four hours, better alignment between community health services and social care, improved cancer outcomes and the improvements in the availability of mental health services for common mental health disorders, there is a lot of work still to be done.
Announcing the publication next week of the implementation framework for the NHS Long Term Plan, he said NHS organisations need to chart their own course for implementing the key improvements using the national support that the framework will set out. But he said it will also be upfront about areas where there are currently no answers.
There will be a more transparent financial regime for trusts, more realistic control totals with rules-based, predictable regime so that all financial routes will be visible across organisations, he said.
Taking better care of staff, being more flexible employers and ensuring HR is seen as a key discipline for the NHS were all key points throughout the plenary, as well as a recognition that the NHS needs to play a wider role in the community in areas such as reducing air pollution and knife crime. On that note, he announced the appointment of the NHS's first clinical director of violence reduction, consultant trauma surgeon Martin Griffiths.
Ending his session with thanks to the assembled senior leaders for the work they have done and what they are yet to do in the coming year, Simon was then joined by Niall Dickson to announce a new format for Confed next year.
The NHS Confederation’s annual conference is to join together with NHS England and NHS Improvement’s annual Expo conference, to deliver the biggest and most significant health care conference in the UK. The event will be a single point of focus for health and care leaders and their teams to come together at a time of transformation in the system.
For commentary on Simons Steven’s speech, and to stay up to date on what's happening at conference, go to our live blog.