4. Workforce engagement: maximising our people resource and realising potential
At September 2011, there were approximately 10,000 AHPs working across Scotland in health and social care settings: 95% were in health care and the 546 practitioners in social care were OTs who, despite comprising only 1% of the total social care workforce, addressed 35% of all adult referrals.
AHPs in Scotland have experienced significant review and restructuring of their services in recent months. AHP directors have worked in partnership with staff side and professional leaders to plan and deliver sustainable and affordable services for the future. While there has been a slowing down in the growth AHPs have experienced over the last 10 years, there has always been recognition of the value AHPs bring to reshaping care for older people; consequently, significant resource has been made available from the Change Fund to support AHP developments targeted at enabling people to live independently at home and prevent or delay admissions to hospital or care settings.
AHPs are using the capacity and capability created through the development of consultant and advanced practitioner roles to provide clinical leadership, enhance patient pathways and improve the quality of service delivery.
Our questions are - what are the other priorities for workforce planning and development over the next three years? What is needed to support this?
- An AHP data platform should be established to provide ongoing analysis and intelligence on the AHP workforce and assist AHP directors to undertake annual workforce modelling with key stakeholders from higher education institutions and health and social care. This will enable the projection of AHP workforce requirements to meet service needs.
- AHP directors will initiate a review of AHP working practices in NHSScotland to maximise efficiency and productivity, introducing different working patterns in partnership with staff side. Releasing Time to Care will be integrated into all AHP service improvement systems and will be delivered by 2013.
- AHPs in social care should explore how improvements in productive working can be delivered, building on the achievements so far delivered through the implementation of the Guidance for the Provision of Equipment and Adaptations.
Email: Susan Malcolm