Vidhya Alakeson, In Control associate, discusses the issue of
individual budgets and the how the NHS will have to adapt in a
recent article in The Guardian.
From April this year, those with highly complex, long-term
health needs who are eligible for NHS continuing healthcare will
have the right to ask for their care to be delivered as a personal
health budget and, explains Vidhya, the NHS will have to be ready
and able to respond.
She goes on to highlight why this change is so important,
introducing us to Stephen one of the personal budget holders who
feature in her book, Delivering Personal Health Budgets, pointing
out that 'It wasn't until Stephen participated in a personal health
budget pilot in Nottinghamshire in 2010 that he was able to gain
control of his care'.
She goes on to say that while, 'Personal health budgets present
an opportunity for the NHS to broaden its focus from delivering
healthcare to supporting people with health needs to live their
lives to the fullest extent possible', there are some key
challenges facing the NHS such as being able to unlock money from
existing contracts and being able to change the way they do things
or potentially 'lose out to new entrants'.
She goes on to explain that 'Budget holders will demand greater
flexibility and a broader, more preventive range of care services
than the NHS currently buys. For clinicians, it will mean a
willingness to explore new approaches to meeting long-term health
'I wrote Delivering Personal Health Budgets as a guide to
implementation with the aim that many more people who depend on the
NHS could experience the same life-changing impact from a personal
health budget as Stephen and his family.'
You can hear more from Vidhya about implementing personal health
budgets as well as gain her insight into how to the 10 features of
an effective process within NHS continuing healthcare by joining
our webinar on Wednesday 15th January at 10am. There are
still places available. To find out more about this and other
webinars, as well as how to register, read our article on forthcoming webinars.
Vidhya's book 'Delivering personal health budgets' has been
published this week. You can find out more and how to purchase a
She has also written a further blogpost about how the NHS will
need to adapt for personal budget in long term health care for
Policy Press which you can read here.