Demos verdict on the Hewitt Review on integrated care systems: Focus on prevention is the right diagnosis but we must strengthen local accountability

Response to Patricia Hewitt’s independent review of integrated care systems.


Ben Glover, Head of Social Policy at Demos, said: 


“The review’s focus on prevention in health treatment is the right diagnosis and is something which should be strongly welcomed. For far too long our NHS has been focused on treating illness and disease, rather than preventing it. This cuts lives short and is financially unsustainable. 


“As the review recognises, shifting to a model of prevention will require moving away from an overly centralised health service. While targets have delivered improvements in some areas, a healthier country cannot be delivered through greater performance management from the centre. The proposed Health, Care and Wellbeing Assembly should include citizens and have greater say on the way that the health and care systems operate.


“A local approach, one which recognises that our health is shaped by the places we live, is critical to achieving this. Local health leaders have a key role to play, but so too do local communities. We need to go further in embedding communities and citizens directly into the governance of local health systems, so that we truly mobilise the experience and strengths of local communities.”