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On the Horizon: Wraparound Care

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On the Horizon: Wraparound Care

So-called ‘wraparound’ care, i.e. the integration of health and social care, was introduced in response to the problems facing both areas, with the lack of interaction between them lengthening the process of healthcare provision for the Service User. In this blog post, we’ll be looking at the results this innovation will have for UK Service Users, as well as the implications for procurement. 

The Significance of the FYFV

Encapsulated in the Five Year Forward View is the introduction of the new Sustainability and Transformation Plans (STPs) and within these, The New Care Models Programme. These detail the NHS’ answer to such pressures, and include the integration of health and social care.  However, the integration of health and social care predates these plans, with such ambitions epitomised by 2013's Better Care Fund. As a recent article on 'The Guardian' website highlights, Dorset CCG has capitalised on this funding, and is a primary site for the trialling of such an integrated model. NHS Chief, Simon Stevens, hopes that such initiatives can be rolled out nationally to address what was formerly presumed to be insurmountable service demand, as part of Dorset’s wider STP.

The Better Care Fund

The Better Care Fund encapsulates the savings hoped to be accrued through the collaboration of these two types of care. The BCF aims to ‘join-up health and care services, so that people can manage their own health and wellbeing, and live independently in their communities for as long as possible.’

This model has been realised through Dorset CCG’s 10 community hubs, whereby communication between relevant health and social care organisations are executed - from GPs to ambulance services to district nursing services - and integration ensured. With over 80% of Service Users being of an older demographic, and Dorset’s quality of life meaning that it has many over-85s and over-75s, it is a prime area for the trialling of such a new model of care. 

Extra care at home will also go some way to combatting the problem of costly use of acute sites. Indeed, spend per patient on hospital stays in Dorset has been estimated to have dropped by over £2,400 - more than a 50% cost saving. 

Wider Significance

Across the country, health and social care is undergoing extensive redesign and integration aligned with the sentiments expressed in the FYFV, following on from the Coalition Government's initial introduction of the BCF in mid-2013.

To take one example, in Salford, the Integrated Care Organisation (ICO) has united adult social and health care across the city. It has a budget of £213m and over 2000 staff at its disposal, all dedicated to the wellbeing of its c.233,000 residents. As well as the move being expected to deliver approximately £27 million of savings, the new model arguably offers a simplified pathway for service users at a vulnerable point in their lives.  

Consequences

Whilst the results of this integration are not possible to pinpoint as yet due to their recent introduction, to consider Dorset's example, integration appears to be a promising option. Valuable cost savings are being generated - particularly due to the reduction in the use of acute sites. This new efficiency accords with the themes of the FYFV, including the STPs and the initiative of the New Care Models. 

But what results will this have for procurement? We believe that due to these reforms, essential to bidding in 2017 is a genuine pledge from suppliers, affirming their commitment to this integrated approach and how they will realise this connection in their particular service. In short, recognition of this connection between health and social care, and the relevant stakeholders (such as Salford's ICO), is integral to the winning of such tenders.

HealthBid has worked on several innovative models of care across the country, with particular reference to regional STPs. Our team possesses longstanding knowledge of the complexities of the ever evolving NHS landscape. Contact our MD, Tom Sheppard, at tom.sheppard@healthbid.co.uk for more information.

Sources:

https://www.theguardian.com/society/2017/mar/29/nhs-future-depends-on-integrated-health-and-social-care

http://www.local.gov.uk/health-wellbeing-and-adult-social-care/-/journal_content/56/10180/4096799/ARTICLE

https://www.salford.gov.uk/your-council/news/news-archive/news-from-july-2016/historic-move-transforms-salford-s-health-and-social-care/

https://www.england.nhs.uk/ourwork/part-rel/transformation-fund/bcf-plan/

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/nhs-better-care-fund-government-53bn-plan-integrate-health-social-national-audit-office-a7568286.html

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Style & Substance

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Style & Substance

 

When doing creative writing as part of an English class, it is always important to write for your audience. School tends to teach you how to identify who they are, what they like, and then tweak your writing style accordingly. Register, tone, tenses… These are all buzzwords of English writing which have an impact on your final piece.

 

Even though your school days may feel like a while ago (or perhaps just a few years!), the lessons learnt here are valuable. For example, the tone and register you use in a job application will be different to that when writing a party invite to your closest friends. In every situation, there’s a subtle difference in style which is important to pick up on, and bidding is no exception.

 

The bidding style could be seen as a unique combination of commercial (sales) writing, essentially persuasive writing, and storytelling. It’s important to be concise and clear to get across your key points, your win themes. The style you use will influence how your message is communicated to the Commissioner, and so it’s important to be on point. For example, talking about yourself in the past tense too often makes it seem as though you’re not looking forward, and aren’t also currently achieving all of these things. Subtle nuances in the text like this can mount up to change the feel of the text, and so it’s important to bear in mind.

 

If you would like some support with your writing style, want us to write answers for you, or to simply review what you’ve done to maximise your chances of winning, give our Business Development Manager, Joe, a ring on 07341 338 200.

 

 

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A Win-Win Situation

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A Win-Win Situation

As we have said many a time here at HealthBid, preparation is key. You always stand a much greater chance of success if you take the time to prepare and organise the bidding process. There are many stages to this, but no matter which you’re at: if you want to win, you have to know how. Enter the win strategy.

 

As part of the capture planning process during your preparation, you will perform both analyses of your company and your competitors. Out of this should blossom factors which can be highlighted to put you in a prime position to win, as well as instances where you can’t quite match up to others... Win strategies incorporate all of these: your strengths are obvious winning leads, yet identifying your weaknesses and mitigating them is also an important part of strategically developing your answers.

 

To ensure your bid really gets across your strengths, streamline your win strategy into win themes. Having concise bullets which perfectly encapsulate why you should win makes it easier to weave them through your answers. With these key ideas both overtly and subtly included in all of your responses, not only can you provide an answer to the main areas of the specification but you can also reinforce your strengths to make your bid stand out above the others.

 

Without these win themes, you have less focus on what you’re aiming to highlight. Win themes therefore not only help the writing process but also the Red Team (what is a Red Team? See our previous blog post here!). You can compare and contrast what your answers really say with the key ideas you wanted to initially get across, making any relevant changes to strengthen them before submitting the bid.

 

Want help with creating your win strategy? Picking out your win themes? How about checking your answers are in sync with them? For any help with the bidding process, get in touch with us on 07341 338 200, or send an email over to our Business Development Manager, Joe (joe.gatenby@healthbid.co.uk).

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Reasons to Red Team

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Reasons to Red Team

Composing a bid can be just like any other sort of writing: at the start, you have good intentions of allowing yourself enough time to check your work thoroughly, reflect on the specification and make sure you have answered everything. In practice, when life happens, you may find yourself finishing the bid a bit closer to the final deadline than anticipated. Ideally, you should still check your work; in reality, you skim read it and think ‘it’ll do’. This is why red teaming is so key: organise a time to discuss the work, constructively criticise it and spot those little errors.

 

First things first, how can you avoid sailing a bit too close to the wind when it comes to deadlines? If you know that you have a tendency to finish things last minute, create your own deadline to stick to. If you make plans to go through your work with other people, something which is extremely beneficial to the resulting bid, there’ll be more motivation to get it done in advance.  

 

Once you have met your own deadline, it’s important to get a second opinion before that of the commissioner. Go through your work line by line, picking up on any small turn of phrase or grammatical mistakes which could be improved, as well as keeping in mind both the question and your win themes (if you find yourself scratching your head at this term, keep an eye out for our next blog!). Don’t be afraid to change it up a bit – on a first draft, it’s important to answer all of the points and, on the second, make it a more engaging read and ensure it will stand out above the others.

 

Finally, be impersonal. Obviously pick up on things you could improve next time you’re writing, but don’t take anything to heart. Your colleagues criticising your work constructively isn’t them criticising you, and it’s always easier to improve pre-existing work than to write it from scratch! This is what a red team is all about: a joint effort and open discussion will ensure an all-round better bid, helping to secure that win.

 

There are no prizes for second best – clichéd maybe, but very true here! There is little point in writing a bid half-heartedly, and so if you want a new yet extremely knowledgeable pair of eyes to have a look through your bid, contact us on 07341 338 200.

 

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The Strengths of Story Time

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The Strengths of Story Time

There is no doubt that writing is a powerful tool. When you’re young, bed-time stories are one of the highlights of your day. When you get just that bit older, despite the narratives changing slightly, stories still remain a great channel through which to engage people and express a point. This is why we believe they are a key factor to bear in mind when composing a bid.

Evidently, the aim here is slightly different to when you were a child; instead of falling into a blissful slumber, you want a story to bring your day-to-day accomplishments as a company to life, and strike a chord with the commissioner. Short of showing them in person how your company works, which of course you can do once the bid has been won, a story gives the most realistic impression of how what you do (and how you do it) would greatly help the situation in question.

Simply describing the way in which your services work and letting the commissioner deduce its benefits is a passive method which makes the reader disengage. Be creative: imagine up a character who is using your solution in their organisation, use it to show them how it has a positive influence on the lives of the patients, and therefore how it’s their best option. They can then visualise why they should choose your bid and services over others, setting you up nicely on the path to victory.

Last but not least, don’t forget to tell your company’s story. Just like tailoring your bid to the tender and to the commissioner as discussed in the last post, make your company relatable through giving it that more personal edge and help the reader to understand its purpose. Finding out who created the solution and why will make your bid stronger, as the commissioner will further comprehend your reasons for tendering. If you fancy getting your stories straight and streamlining your bid, don’t hesitate to call us on 07341 338 200 or send an email to joe.gatenby@healthbid.co.uk!

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It’s hard selling to the NHS?

Writing and creating bids is not easy. Far from it. It takes a lot of time, preparation and effort. Not to mention flair, creativeness and great customer knowledge. And that’s just the starting point. Imagine if you’re new to the market. The opportunities in the NHS for organisations are huge especially those with new innovations and ideas.

But working with the NHS is different, very different. The language, the acronyms, the process all have to be navigated successfully and this is really before you’ve even pondered how best to present your products and services. Taking these first steps can be challenging and often baffling – this is why we decided to create a basic training package for private sector businesses – the sessions help you breakdown what’s needed and how you start the process of creating sales and bidding strategies for the NHS.

We give you direction and advice about what will and what won’t work. We believe these type of intense training sessions will save you significant time and effort and also help you understand the likely timescales and barriers for success. If your company is just starting to think about selling to the NHS why not give us a call or drop us a line. 

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