Education And Debate

Community Care: The First Year: Community care in Bassetlaw

BMJ 1994; 308 doi: (Published 12 March 1994) Cite this as: BMJ 1994;308:708
  1. T Groves
  1. British Medical Journal, London WC1H 9JR.

    Last April the United Kingdom's system for providing community care - practical and social care for ill and disabled people who need help with daily life - was changed in an effort to make it better and more eficient.1 The BMJ ran a series of articles about the changes that included descriptions of community care in four places: Gwent in Wales, Bassetlaw in Nottinghamshire, Northern Ireland, and Newcastle in north east England.*RF 2-5* In this and the next three articles we look at what has happened to community care over the past year in these places.

    * This is the first of a series of four articles looking at what has happened in community care over the past year.

    Most people in Bassetlaw, a council district in North Nottinghamshire, would probably say that local community care services have not changed much over the past year. But some local residents, for instance, those needing extra help at home after leaving hospital, may have noticed that the whole process of getting that help has become easier and, perhaps, quicker than before. The various organisations arranging and providing care have been working hard to communicate and cooperate more effectively and to find the most workable way of giving local people what they need. This planning work behind the scenes should improve services gradually but is already smoothing the potentially problematic processes of referring and assessing people for care.

    Making plans for Bassetlaw

    “If you'd talked to me a year ago about district planning for community care in Bassetlaw I'd have been tearing my hair out,” says David Whitham, chair of the Bassetlaw district joint planning team, which consists of representatives from health and local authorities, the family health services authority, users, carers, and voluntary groups. “But I've been immensely encouraged because the planning team has stuck …

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