In February 2015 we released the Better Care Together strategy document, which can be found here  (a summary can be found here).


‘Better Care Together’ is a review of local health services.  This website explains why the review is happening, our plans and how you can contribute.

The 'Better Care Together' review is being carried out by local NHS organisations:  

The review is an opportunity to make sure the best possible health and care services are provided across North Lancashire and South Cumbria, which meet the needs of residents, now and well into the future.

Health professionals in the area, including GPs and hospital doctors, are looking at how health services are provided.  They are considering how the different parts of the health and care service can work together more effectively to ensure our population gets the most appropriate care.

It is important for the health professionals carrying out this review to know what you think about local health services, what your priorities are and how you think services should change.

Please take a little time to browse around this website, find out more about this review and how you can get involved.


Latest News

25 May 2016 May Monthly Update

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The latest monthly news is availble to download from the link above

Included in this month's edition is: funding announcement for 2016/17;  video link for patients;  national awards and more besides!

23 May 2016 National Investment In Local Health Services

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Please download this press release here



Better Care Together, the local strategy to change NHS services across South Cumbria and North Lancashire, has been awarded almost £5million of national funding for 2016-17.

The money is being invested locally as part of the national New Care Models Programme. Better Care Together is one of 50 communities across the country developing new models of care and the latest investment brings the total amount of funding received over the past year to £9million.

The funding is being used to strengthen the links between services in the community to provide more support for people who are at risk of hospital admission due to long term health problems, frailty or old age. Investment will also be made to streamline hospital services for eye care, cardiology and musculo-skeletal conditions in order to reduce waiting times and visits to hospital. Local NHS organisations will also use some of the funding to invest in Information Technology to improve patient care.

Andrew Bennett, the senior responsible officer for Better Care Together, and Chief Officer of NHS Lancashire North Clinical Commissioning Group, said: "To receive this latest investment in Morecambe Bay is a vote of confidence in the work undertaken locally so far."

"Our challenge now is to make the changes in the way local services work together. This will result in fewer patients being referred to hospital, and fewer patients being admitted to hospital, with more appropriate forms of care arranged to support patients either in or closer to their homes."

"At the same time, we will be working with each of our local communities to understand what is important to them about their health and wellbeing. This is vital for the NHS to be sustainable into the future."

"We will ensure this investment is spent on making changes that improve the health outcomes we want for the people of Morecambe Bay.

16 May 2016 Weekly Update 16.05.16

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Please click the link above to download the latest weekly update

6 May 2016 06.05.16 Weekly Update

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Click the link for a copy of our latest weekly update.

6 May 2016 Local teams shortlisted for awards

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A flagship and innovative project between University Hospitals of Morecambe Bay NHS Foundation Trust’s (UHMBT’s) Hospital Alcohol Liaison Service (HALS) team and the Lancaster-based charity Red Rose Recovery (RRR), which has been

part-funded by the Better Care Together strategy - has been shortlisted for a prestigious award by a leading national publication.

The team has been named as a finalist by The Health Service Journal (HSJ) in its annual ‘HSJ Value Awards’ in the 2016 Emergency Medicine category.

The HSJ is the only national magazine title which covers all aspects of publicly-funded healthcare, providing news, analysis, best practice information and advice from the most powerful people in health, for the most powerful people in health.

The ‘HSJ Value in Healthcare Awards’ recognises and rewards ‘outstanding efficiency and improvement and the excellent use of resources’, but also recognises examples of ‘demonstrable improvement in outcomes in clinical initiatives’.

HSJ judges were ‘very impressed’ with the high standard of nominations, and shortlisted the UHMBT and Red Rose Recovery teams for ‘demonstrating that they are striving to improve value and efficiency in healthcare’.

The project came about after a gap between patients with alcohol-related problems attending the Royal Lancaster Infirmary’s (RLI) Emergency Department (ED) and accessing community services was identified. A high percentage of those patients

attending the RLI’s ED were not being referred from the ED into community support, and those patients which were referred, did not engage.

NHS Lancashire North Clinical Commissioning Group arranged and funded Red Rose Recovery to work in partnership with UHMBT HALS to facilitate a new ‘In-Reach alcohol related support service’, as part of the wider Better Care Together strategy, which is a partnership of 11 health and social care organisations working to implement a new clinical strategy across the Morecambe Bay area."

The small team from HALS, which includes Alan Dowswell and Jan Fisher, both Alcohol Liaison Specialist Nurses; Lorraine Evans, Clinical Service Coordinator and Andy Crundell, Frequent Attender Case Manager at UHMBT provide assessment, interventions and advice to patients, family, caregivers and other health professionals regarding alcohol-use disorders.

Jan Fisher, HALS, UHMBT, said: "The North West has the highest number of alcohol related deaths in the UK, and the cost of alcohol misuse in society is estimated to be around £21 billion each year. North West England has an average consumption of 19.3 units per adult per week which ranks highly compared to the rest of the country.

"Alcohol abuse is becoming a serious issue in all areas of society, and the Hospital Alcohol Liaison Service at UHMBT offer a vital NHS contribution to secondary prevention, and improving the future health of patients, including those who enter hospital with severe alcohol problems and multiple health problems."

Carol Park, Assistant Chief Nurse for Medicine, UHMBT, said: "Through collaborative working with Red Rose Recovery, the HALS team have improved clinical pathways for patients and co-ordinated discharges, which in turn, increases the access and engagement that patients have with primary and community services. The project has seen 77% of those referred to Red Rose Recovery from HALS actually engage with the service, which is a superb result, and has seen a reduction in attendances in alcohol-related emergencies at the RLI.

"Initial figures show that, of the eleven ‘frequent attenders’ referred from RLI’s ED to Red Rose Recovery, there has been a reduction in their ED attendance after they were referred to Red Rose Recovery . Results also show that an impressive 90% of all patients referred with alcohol-related problems now engage with their recovery coaches at Red Rose Recovery to change their current lifestyle and behaviours".

Marc Cottee, Team Leader at Red Rose Recovery, said: "We are delighted with the results we are seeing through the ‘In-Reach alcohol-related support service’. Red Rose Recovery aims to bridge the gap between addiction and recovery by supporting individuals as they identify a need to change their current lifestyle and behaviours. The project aims to support individuals to create their own pathway to recovery in order to sustain long term successful recovery."

Sue Smith, Executive Chief Nurse, UHMBT, said: "I am thrilled to hear that our HALS team and Red Rose Recovery have been named as finalists in the ‘HSJ Value Awards’, and would like to thank the whole HALS team and Red Rose Recovery for all their hard work.

"The strong relationship our HALS team have built with Red Rose Recovery has enabled us to improve the outcomes for local people living in Lancaster and surrounding areas with alcohol dependency, leading to improved quality of life, reduced mortality rates and overall patient experience. Well done to everyone involved."

The two organisations will now complete presentations and interviews to a judging panel made up of senior and influential figures from the health sector. The awards ceremony will take place in Manchester on 24 May 2016.

More information about Better Care Together can be found at:

To find out more about the work of Red Rose Recovery, please visit: