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Bracknell Forest: CQC publishes its review of how local health and social care systems work together

25 October 2017
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The Care Quality Commission has published its findings following a review of the health and social care in Bracknell Forest, Berkshire.

This report is one of 20 targeted local system reviews looking specifically at how older people move through the health and social care system, with a focus on how services work together. The reviews look at how hospitals, community health services, GP practices, care homes and homecare agencies work together to provide seamless care for people aged 65 and over living in a local area.

CQC found that the health and social care system in Bracknell Forest was working effectively with an integrated approach that was having positive outcomes for older people.

Reviewers found there was a system-wide commitment to serve the people of Bracknell Forest well, and most older people living in the area received good quality health and social care services in a timely way.

There was evidence of strong strategic leadership between Bracknell Forest Council, Bracknell and Ascot Clinical Commissioning Group and providers, with a well-established, collaborative approach to designing and delivering services.

Their priorities included helping older people avoid unnecessary admissions to hospital, offering older people support to stay well, and improving the capacity of homecare agencies and care homes to manage the recruitment challenges. A shortage of skilled social care staff, and of therapists, was also affecting the numbers of patients waiting in hospital to go home.

As a result partners were working together to reduce the numbers of people remaining in hospital while they waited for their ongoing care to be arranged. Performance had improved and was better than comparator and national averages.

Professor Steve Field, Chief Inspector of Primary Care Services, said:

"It is clear that people living in the Bracknell Forest area benefit from a well-established and mature partnership between all those involved in planning the health and social care system in their area."

"Our review of Bracknell Forest's services - and how they work together - has found a number of positive examples of shared initiatives that support local people to maintain their health in their usual place of residence and get access to services that are tailored to their individual needs when they need them."

“Although the system is working well, the big challenges for the future include managing the shortage of care home places and prioritising the development of an integrated workforce made up of skilled and competent staff."

“I am satisfied that these challenges are already recognised by all the agencies involved, and I am confident they will continue to work together to find a solution that serves the needs of older people in the Bracknell Forest area."


For further information, please contact John Scott, Regional Engagement Manager on 077898 75809.

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Last updated:
11 July 2018

Notes to editors

The Bracknell Forest local system review looked principally at how people move between services provided by 15 care homes, 17 homecare agencies, 16 GP practices, Frimley Health NHS Foundation Trust,  Royal Berkshire NHS Foundation Trust and Berkshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust.   

This review was carried out following a request from the Secretaries of State for Health and Communities and Local Government to undertake a programme of 20 targeted reviews of local authority areas. The purpose of the reviews is to understand how people move through the health and social care system with a focus on the interfaces between services, and identify any areas for improvement.

This review makes a number of suggestions of areas for the local system to focus on to secure improvement including:

Ensure there are robust and regularly evaluated plans to manage the current and projected shortfall of care home provision and the provision of high quality dementia care.
Prioritise workforce development and continue to work collaboratively to deliver an integrated, skilled and competent workforce
Ensure there is a consistent whole system and evaluated approach to best practice where medicine procedures are designed around a person’s discharge needs from the point of admission.
Continue to ensure that public engagement remains a priority alongside regular evaluation of effectiveness.
Ensure there are plans in place to reduce transport delays from hospital.

The full report can be found on our website.

About the Care Quality Commission

The Care Quality Commission (CQC) is the independent regulator of health and social care in England.

We make sure health and social care services provide people with safe, effective, compassionate, high-quality care and we encourage care services to improve.

We monitor, inspect and regulate services to make sure they meet fundamental standards of quality and safety and we publish what we find to help people choose care.