This video was filmed during the official Southwest Pathology Service Laboratory Opening Day.
Southwest Pathology Services (SPS laboratory) is a joint venture between Yeovil District Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, Taunton and Somerset NHS Foundation Trust and private sector partners Integrated Pathology Partnerships (iPP).
[Charles Howeson -Chairman – Southwest pathology Partnerships]
Quite a few years ago a number of people had a dream. Their dream was to take forwards something that had been set out in a strategic report for the government by Lord Carter of Coles
In 2008 he wrote a report saying a part of the NHS that does not see the light of day but is absolutely mainstream in developing technology and important to the extent of 70% of every single diagnosis could have something done to it. It could save £500m per year, it could have high quality, it could have more consistent quality, it could be future-proofed in terms of equipment provision and it could be delivered more than locally in regional hubs and spokes.
May I now introduce Lord Carter of Coles
[Lord Carter of Coles – Chaired Review of NHS Pathology Services in England]
Now as Charles said 8 years ago I was asked to look at Pathology and somebody described pathology as the golden thread that runs through the healthcare service. It’s a big undertaking – we spend £2.5b a year on it in England and it’s tremendous value because at the heart of all healthcare systems 70% of all in-patient out-patient things have to have a pathology test in order to help guide the treatment that goes from there. And in undertaking this review for the government what became clear was that we do this better. And why it’s wonderful to come down here today is to see what actually people have turned that dream, that vision I had, into in practical reality. And therefore I think it’s marvellous for me to be 7-8 years after starting on this journey seeing what happened. To come down here and actually walk across there this afternoon, kick the tires and realise how much difference it’s going to make to healthcare, first of all in this part of the country, subsequently as the exemplar to everyone else who wants to carry forward that reform.
So really the main reason for coming down today was to say Thank You to people like Jo, Paul & David and all the key people who’ve made this possible. It’s a great achievement and nice to have been marginally part of it. Well done.
So as I hand over to Jeremy, could you all tell someone else about this because the circumstances in the NHS are changing rapidly. As of the 1st April with the new architecture the new commissioners are charged with making some very big efficiencies and whilst it’s possible for everybody on their own to take a step forwards and this is what we’d like to do, the days of being able to do that before it is done to one are getting numbered. That is my message.
[Jeremy Browne – Lib Dem MP for Taunton]
How are we going to achieve better value for money for the tax payer while driving up service provision. And a lot of that is about questioning some of our base assumptions about service delivery. You don’t want this changes forced on you – you want to get ahead of those changes and make them work for the customer, or for the patient in this case. So congratulations everyone who’s done the work, because although that is quite an easy concept it requires people to challenge a lot of their assumptions, what they’re familiar with and think about new models of service provision and then get the details right. And that has clearly been done in this case.
I was also told that the other great advantage is that it’s not just collaboration within the public sector it’s collaboration with the private sector as well. We have a situation where two plus two equals five which in a time of straightened finances sounds like the sort of sums we need to be looking to achieve.
So Thank You, Thank You for giving me the chance to come here. It’s a great privilege. Thank You to you all for coming and I hope it’s a great success.