Reducing pressure on hospitals: Lessons from the frontline of community health

23 September 2016

The Optical Confederation (OC), in conjunction with the NHS Confederation, Local Government Association (LGA) and the Health Foundation, is hosting fringe events at the upcoming Labour and Conservative party conferences. The events will explore key themes facing the health sector including

  • cuts to public health funding
  • delivering more healthcare in the community
  • social care provision and
  • preventative healthcare.

The events, ‘Hospitals under pressure: the community solution?’, will take place on 26 September (Labour) and 4 October (Conservative).

They will see senior representatives from each organisation discuss the ways in which community health care providers can help reduce pressure on hospitals, with the community optical sector held up as a good example of how local services can support change in a sustainable way.

These events will highlight to conference delegates, including Health and Wellbeing Board members and councillors, how community providers are relieving pressure on GPs and hospitals. They will examine how this helps to close the NHS funding and capacity gap whilst delivering on the NHS’s own priority to provide more care out of hospital and closer to home.

Speaking on behalf of the Optical Confederation, Katrina Venerus said, “These events are a great opportunity to highlight to key stakeholders how community eye health providers are relieving pressure on GPs and hospitals. We will be sharing best practice examples of locally commissioned eye care services and calling on political decision-makers to follow national priorities and accelerate the uptake of these models at scale and pace, increasing access and capacity in an innovative yet sustainable way in their local areas.”