More Help With Long Term Conditions

Ruzanna Harutyunyan's picture

New guidance to help NHS and local authority commissioners ensure that people with long term conditions are more involved in decisions about their illness and treatment, has been issued by the Department of Health today.

The document, Supporting People With Long Term Conditions: Commissioning Personalised Care Planning, will help the Government achieve its goal that by 2010 every one of the 15 million people with a long term condition will be offered a personalised care plan.

The guidance explains how NHS and social care services can provide personalised care and services for people with long term conditions, this includes:

* Promoting choice and control by putting the patient at the centre of the care planning process

* Focusing on setting goals that people want to achieve such as returning to work or living independently

* Sharing information with people so that they can be involved in decisions about their care


* Providing support for people to self care/self manage their conditions

* Integrating health and social care agencies for more joined up working

The guidance document advises that following a care planning discussion between NHS or social care staff and a patient with a long term condition, a care plan is written to bring together all patient information. The care plan would be accessible to both the patient and NHS, or social care staff and would record that the discussion include any goal setting and shared decision making.

Health Minister Ann Keen said: "As a former nurse, I know how much it means to patients to be involved in decisions about their illness and treatment

"Personalised care planning will help ensure that patients with a long term condition are given more choice about their treatment and that their care is tailored according to their individual needs. "As Lord Darzi set out in the Next Stage Review, the Government is committed to an NHS that gives patients greater involvement in planning their care."

The guidance document has been informed by the NHS Next Stage Review consultation and the Your Health, Your Care, Your Say consultation on community services and shaped by around 80 stakeholders in health, social care, third sector and patient representative groups.

Douglas Smallwood, Chief Executive of Diabetes UK said: "Care planning is key to delivering the services and support needed by people with long term conditions, such as diabetes, to self-manage their condition in partnership with their care teams.

"Diabetes UK welcomes this guidance as a means of supporting commissioners to ensure that the individual priorities are identified, agreed and services are made available to meet these needs, thereby developing the personalised and integrated services required."