We have been waiting a long time for the 10-year plan for the NHS in England. Will it have a real impact? The answer has to be yes if the NHS is to have a sustainable future.
Much of the thinking is driven by the need to treat more patients in their local communities or at home.
Put simply, given that people are living longer and, as they do so, developing more chronic health problems, hospitals will be overrun unless there is more care on offer elsewhere.
The burden on the health service caused by obesity looms large.
That is why an increasing share of NHS resources in England will be directed to GP and community health services. Local schemes which have successfully joined up health and social care provision will be rolled out across England.
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Prevention of ill health and quicker disease diagnosis are also central to the drive to keep people out of hospitals where appropriate.
In another sense this plan is different from its predecessor. In 2014, the chief executive of NHS England Simon Stevens set out his aims in a document named the Five Year Forward View.
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