Just as we have started to come to terms with the impact of the pandemic and the way the subsequent lockdown has impacted on the way we work, we are now embarking on the journey to new ways of working in South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw ICS, as the White Paper makes its way through parliament. It certainly feels like change is the only constant! 

As an ICS,  we approach this latest change with considerable experience of system working. We have over five years of system working under our belts and an opportunity to help the shape the future. The pandemic has been traumatic for so many families and we all have our stories to tell of the personal impact. However perhaps the silver lining, if there is one, is the way that working with a clear common shared purpose has enhanced the way we have worked across the system and strengthened cross team working. We have learned lots and take that learning into the next stage of our ICS development. 

As an ICS Workforce Hub, with teams drawn from Health Education England, Trusts, CCGs, managers, clinicians and administrators we like to think we have adapted to a way of working that could model the way many teams will work in the future. We have a largely external focus that covers hospital Trusts, mental health and community services, primary care and social care. We have a common ambition to ensure that the citizens of South Yorkshire get the best possible health and social care. We know this can only happen if our system is a great place to work with the certainty of a sustained pipeline of passionate, well trained staff for the future. We know to do this well that mutual respect and cross team working is essential and I know that, despite the challenges of virtual meetings and home based working that somehow, as a team we have become more understanding and more effective. 

We know there is more change and uncertainty ahead but, hopefully we have a great baseline to respond positively to the challenges and opportunities ahead, indeed if there was a super league of ICSs, I’m sure we would be in the top six! How’s that for a topical end to a blog!