The NHS is facing the greatest global health threat in its history. A huge collective effort is underway with the NHS mobilising to change the way that hospitals and GP practices run, freeing up tens of thousands of beds, bringing in more staff and ventilators, getting protective equipment to where it is needed and ramping up testing.
In March 2020, NHS South East London CCG established a Covid-19 control centre to provide control and command, co-ordination and decision-making across the integrated care system (ICS) covering:
- System management of COVID-19 – overall coordination, system oversight and management, along with convening system calls/approaches and ensuring agreed approaches across the ICS where required
- Information cascade and issue escalation – supports the efficient dissemination of information and escalation of issues that require regional attention
- Single point of contacts and co-ordination capacity – for the region, along with south east London-wide co-ordination and oversight of Covid-19 returns and workstreams, and logging of key discussions and actions.
- CCG response – supporting the CCG’s direct response, including the co-ordination of workstream leads, subject matter experts and utilisation of CCG staff to contribute to system working
Several workstreams and subject matter expert groups have been set up that work across south east London. Example of the workstreams include: primary and community care; acute care; demand and capacity; discharge; estates; and PPE and supplies. In addition, there are a number of areas which have identified subject matter expertise (SME) support such as mental health and learning disabilities services, information technology and care homes.
Whilst the workstreams have been established across south east London, supported and co-ordinated by the CCG working with system partners to ensure a collaborative approach, each of the organisations involved retains its own governance and decision-making arrangements.