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Health creation approach needed to address inequalities, says New NHS Alliance

The NHS should move beyond illness prevention to health creation to address the growing gap in life expectancy, the New NHS Alliance has said.

In a new briefing paper, published today, the New NHS Alliance argues that focusing on delivering services to a population can encourage dependency and drive up demand.

It argues this has contributed to increasing health inequality, with the life expectancy gap growing for the first time since the Victorian age.

Instead, it recommends that healthcare commissioners and providers adopt a ‘health creation’ approach, where they go into partnership with communities to develop solutions.

Drawing on the work of the Young Foundation, the New NHS Alliance says that this approach is based on ‘3 Cs’: control over the circumstances of our own lives, contact with other people that is meaningful and constructive, and confidence to see ourselves as an asset.

The briefing says: “We know from our experience that when people are engaged in a way that appreciates and employs their strengths and skills, they start to take control of their own lives and environments, determine and articulate their own solutions and ambitions and participate in making them happen. And they become more positive, active and resilient.”

The New NHS Alliance has also recently called for a greater role for community pharmacies in delivering care.

The latest edition of NHE features an article by Mark Spencer, co-chair of the New NHS Alliance, on the General Practice Forward View.

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editor's comment

25/09/2017A hotbed of innovation

This edition of NHE comes hot on the heels of this year’s NHS Expo which, once again, proved to be a huge success at Manchester Central. A number of announcements were made during the event, with the health secretary naming the second wave of NHS digital pioneers, or ‘fast followers’, which follow the initial global digital exemplars who were revealed at the same show 12 months earlier.  Jeremy Hunt also stated that by the end of 2018 – the 70th birthday... read more >