Newsletter - May 2016 - Working together: involving staff in change

Improvements to the way health and social care services are delivered in Stockport means health and social care staff working together differently.

Stockport Together, eight integrated neighbourhood teams are being set up across the borough, bringing together professionals including: GPs, district nurses (DNs), social workers (SWs), and the voluntary sector, to better co-ordinate and deliver care for people who need it most.

Although clinical staff have been involved in developing these improvements, changes to ways of working such as this can raise questions and concerns for people. It is important that everyone has a chance to have their say and get answers to their questions.

Since June 2015, more than 90 engagement sessions with staff in the new neighbourhoods have been organised and delivered by Stockport Council’s Karen McLauchlan, workforce development manager, Aarty Seera and Rachael Kirk, of people and organisational development, under the Stockport Together partnership.

These sessions have focussed on building relationships between busy social workers and district nurses in preparation for when they become fully integrated teams. There has been some good progress and shadowing between DNs and SWs has taken place in some of the neighbourhoods to give professionals a deeper insight into each other’s roles.

Following initial ‘meet and greet’ sessions, members of the groups have been encouraged to suggest subjects to be covered in the team sessions. An example included a request for information about mental health referrals and services including IAPT (Improving Access to Psychological Therapies).

These team sessions are now transitioning to become triage sessions where the teams discuss patients in need of a joint approach from professionals to improve their health and care.

Plans for further training sessions and other staff engagement activities across the partnership organisations will be announced shortly. This will include drop-in sessions for community staff, further joint events for GPs and consultants, voluntary sector events, and the launch of an online ‘crowdsourcing’ hub for staff across Stockport Together partner organisations to share ideas to improve ways of working.

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