NHS Confederation. NHS Providers 2022 Hidden waits: the lasting impact of the pandemic on children's services in the community. Briefing. 2022. https// (accessed 7 March 2024)

The King's Fund. Making care closer to home a reality: refocusing the system to primary and community care. 2024. https// (accessed 7 March 2024)

World Health Organization. Primary health care. 2024. https// (accessed 8 March 2024)

Making ‘care closer to home’ a reality

02 April 2024
Volume 29 · Issue 4

The World Health Organization (2024) and past governments in the UK have outlined a vision for providing personalised care closer to where people live within their local communities. Yet, this concept has never become a sustainable reality. Indeed, the data from NHS England and NHS Improvement from January 2022 estimated that over 900 000 children and adults were waiting for care within community services' backlog, compounded by the pandemic (NHS Confederation, 2022). The key components of the English healthcare system remain centred around hospitals and emergency care. However, in their recent report, The King's Fund, reignite a refocused model of community-centric health and care provision: Making care closer to home a reality: refocusing the system to primary and community care (The King's Fund, 2024). To make this practical, they advise that generating this vision requires all policies and strategies aligning towards a total change in focus that shifts care away from hospitals, and towards primary and community health care. Nurses are integral to the success of this system-based shift, so it is essential that the profession uses this opportunity to highlight their value in a new community-focused NHS.

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