Sarah Beaumont-Smith, CEO of Fulcrum Infrastructure Group, highlights the impressive way the primary care estate ‘flexed’ and demonstrated its adaptability during, and in the wake of, the COVID-19 pandemic. She believes that ‘what was done at great speed and out of necessity’ has ‘helped to change the mindset’ of how capacity in the primary care estate could be used over the longer term.
It is fair to say that we remain in turbulent times across the healthcare sector. We have all emerged from the pandemic hoping for some much-needed stability, and while there are promising signs of things getting back to some form of normality, it is clear that it will not be ‘business as unusual’ for quite some time yet. Added to this, the structure of the NHS is going through important changes – most notably with the new Integrated Care Systems (ICSs) being established across England – that will help to transform how different organisations plan and deliver joined-up health and social care services in different regions.
It is also a time of huge political change – at the time of writing, two politicians are battling to become the country’s next Prime Minister, and by the time you are reading this, one will have been selected, and will have started setting out their own vision for the UK, including what the NHS of the future might look like. So, the health estate finds itself in a perfect storm of political uncertainty, a changing NHS landscape, and with the after-effects of the pandemic still being felt.
A track record of resilience
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