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Sharing integrated health and care from Wales with the world

4th Apr 2019

The Bevan Commission led a Welsh delegation to the International Conference for Integrated Care in San Sebastián, Spain

Welsh health and care professionals have been sharing their experiences of delivering integrated care with policy makers, clinicians and researchers from all over the globe.

The Bevan Commission, Wales’ premier think tank for health and care, led a delegation from Wales to the International Conference for Integrated Care 2019 (organised by the International Foundation for Integrated Care) to exchange best practice.

Over 1,300 attendees from global health and care systems attended the event, alongside Welsh Government officials, NHS professionals, senior representatives from the Bevan Commission and Bevan Exemplars. Bevan Exemplars are health and care professionals in Wales who trial and test out innovative ideas to transform patient experiences and health outcomes.

The integrated care case studies showcased from the Bevan Exemplar programme include:

  • Saving a struggling GP surgery through upskilling staff and engaging patients (Dr Arfon Williams, Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board)
  • Diagnosing dementia quickly and accurately through a digital cognitive measurement tool (Clive Thomas, Swansea Bay University Health Board)
  • Tackling the workforce crisis in a deprived area by creating a training and development pipeline for local doctors (Professor Paul Edwards, Cwm Taf Morgannwg University Health Board)
  • Transforming rural midwifery services through training and innovative use of technology (Marie Lewis, Powys Teaching Health Board)
  • Preventing language and behaviour difficulties in children through positive interaction with families (Catherine Pape, Powys Teaching Health Board)
  • Using video conferencing to provide pulmonary rehab in a rural area (Claire Hurlin, Hywel Dda University Health Board)

Two Bevan Exemplars, Claire Hurlin and Clive Thomas, were awarded the 1st and 3rd prizes respectively in the International Foundation of Integrated Care’s Digital Health Awards, announced at the event.

Representatives from the Bevan Commission reported on their unique role in informing and advising health policy and practice in Wales. Presentations from Bevan Exemplars and the Director of the Bevan Commission were described as “inspirational” by attendees.

It is hoped that the international visit, supported by the Welsh Government, will foster closer relationships and broker new collaborations between health and care professionals in Wales and their equivalents worldwide.

Helen Howson, Director of the Bevan Commission, said: “It is now more vital than ever to ensure that Wales can exchange best practice with health and care colleagues from around the world. The awards received by Bevan Exemplars represent an important recognition of the outstanding innovation being developed in Wales.

We have a proud heritage as the birthplace of the NHS and radical thinkers to make our health and care system fit for the future, and it has been a privilege to celebrate this on the world stage.”

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