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Towards an end to ‘Battlefield’ decision making

A very happy New Year To you, your family and loved ones

We’re only a couple of weeks into 2018 and already we’re hearing about a potential crisis within our National Health Services. With tens of thousands of routine operations cancelled, Trusts have struggled with a lack of beds and their Accident and Emergency Departments are over-run as the flu season hits us, an unusually forceful impact.

The newspaper headlines shout about a return to “battlefield medicine”, which basically means that the NHS is dealing with problems on the run rather than with a measured and properly planned approach. Yet those of us who work in the health and social care sector know this is unfortunately nothing new and the most likely reason why.

With cuts to funding across the NHS and local authorities over many years, 2018 will have to be the year we see real change in addressing the shortcomings in care funding for many of the most vulnerable people in our society. The only alternative is to watch the crisis deepen and cause further damage.

We have been calling for this consistently over the last few years. A Government Green Paper on the issue not due until the summer. In the meantime, ubu will continue to be looking at ways of working to ensure that the high level of support for the people we serve is always provided to the very best of our abilities.

As a forward-thinking organisation, we are proactive in assessing how we can maximise the service we supply based on budget we have available. We take time to invest fully in our care plans, which are tailored to individual needs and based on meetings and assessments with the people we serve. We don’t now, and never have, accepted a ‘one size fits all attitude to care’.

We have always asserted that because everyone has their own needs, interests and personalities, what may work to enable greater independence for one person we serve will be different for another. This helps us to provide and deliver the right amount of support each individual has been assessed for and needs, and the most efficient way of provide it.

One way of doing this and ensuring that we are maximising gaining independence and other aspirations of the people we serve is by addressing the need for affordable and realistic housing.

By working closely with local authorities, we have been able to develop a number of flat-model plans for the people we serve. By establishing innovative solutions through our unique uStep model, we have been able to streamline our housing and tenancy provision and in the process help to solve issues around companionship and loneliness whilst still giving the people we serve the independence they need. ubu is committed to investigating and investing in emerging technologies and new ways of working to maximise efficiency, whilst enabling the people we serve to live with dignity, greater independence and freedom which is at the heart of everything we do.

Aside from the physical and mental benefits, in the long-term, our training and continued investment will helps to reduce costs and time needed for small tasks, whilst continuing to deliver reliable and valuable round-the-clock support and care.

I await the summer’s Green Paper travelling towards it with hope that 2018 will be the start of a journey and not a continuation of a ‘battle’. Government and local health authorities have a real opportunity to respond effectively and make rational and timely decisions about funding for health and social care, while understanding the impact that these decisions make to such an essential part of our social infrastructure


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