The Institute of Healthcare Management, which has represented healthcare managers for more than a century, has formally become the Institute of Health and Social Care Management, with an aim to give a voice to leaders and managers working throughout both health and social care.
The body says its new name signifies its commitment to supporting individual leaders working throughout both health and social care, at a time when the integration of services is high on the national agenda and when professionals have been working tirelessly in response to the coronavirus emergency.
In line with this move, the IHSCM is actively expanding its membership in social care as it champions policy change and delivers programmes to provide practical support to individual managers responsible for delivering services.
Jane Brightman, who has been appointed to lead the IHSCM’s social care activity, following more than two decades working in the sector, said: “The IHSCM will provide a formal network and a new home for social care leaders and managers as individual professionals. We are committed to supporting our members with a collective voice, and as a place for development and support that they deserve. We will deliver tailored programmes of training and development to help our members respond to challenges in leading their colleagues, and we will listen to professionals and take their message back to policy makers and government.”
Brightman, who liaised with government departments around national care workforce development initiatives in her previous roles, added: “People working in social care move around a very transient sector, with 38,000 establishments in England alone. Support for development is great from many employers, but there is also significant variation in that support. This is an opportunity for care leaders and managers to draw on the IHSCM’s resources so they can take responsibility for their own development as part of a very human and personable professional community.”
The renaming of the institute comes as the IHSCM recently published a new green paper on integrated care – highlighting examples both of best practice, and where a lack of integration across health and social care has caused distress for patients, service users and families. It also comes after the institute held its first integrated care conference in January.
The institute has also been leading a national campaign alongside The Care Workers’ Charity, the National Care Forum and social thanking platform Thank And Praise to recognise inspirational social care workers, managers and leaders for outstanding work during the Covid-19 pandemic.
Jon Wilks, chief executive at the Institute of Health and Social Care Management, said: “Professionals in social care are just as deserving of support as colleagues in health, and we believe having a single organisation dedicated to supporting individual leaders throughout health and social care is significant. Covid-19 has shown the real opportunity for integration across health and social care as barriers have been broken down to respond to the needs of patients and service users. Effective leadership in these sectors is vital to ensuring there is no going back and that the barriers don’t come back up. As integrated care systems across the country take shape to advance this agenda, we are committed to giving social care professionals support they need and a strong voice alongside their colleagues in the NHS and other parts of healthcare.”
Roy Lilley, healthcare commentator and director at the Institute of Health and Social Care Management, added: “Patients, residents and carers don’t look for a boundary between health and social care, neither should politicians, managers and front-line colleagues. The institute is dedicated to supporting our members throughout health and social care who are committed to leading the way to demolish silos and deliver seamless care.”