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Third Sector Leaders make case for change to Cabinet Secretary

The Third Sector Interface (TSI) Scotland Network was delighted to arrange and welcome Cabinet Secretary for NHS Reform, Health and Social Care Neil Gray to Reachout with Arts in Mind in Alloa last week where some of the leading local health organisations, CTSI and SVE made the case for change and presented a range of discussion points to the Minister covering dementia, mental health and alcohol and drugs, key health issues in the county.

The Cabinet Secretary Neil Gray was keen to hear the issues that were close to the hearts of local leaders and Anthea Coulter, chief officer at CTSI discussed some of the community solutions that could be looked at as part of reforming the NHS, “ The Cabinet Secretary was interested and keen to learn about community-focussed options and how our community anchor organisations, with the right investment could help with people coming out of hospital and preventing them going back in; improving alcohol and drugs support in communities for people; and new ways to manage the dementia pathways and how money could be refocused. It is not about more money for services, it is about spending money in the right parts of the system and at the moment it is locked into crisis care and not looking at how we can do more to prevent, divert and avert people from going into hospital in the first place.”

Anthea was joined by Natalie Masterson, chief executive at Stirlingshire Voluntary Enterprise, the TSI in Stirlingshire which together makes up the Health and Social Care Partnership area, and Lesley Arthur, manager at Reachout. Helen Duncan, manager at Town Break which supports people with dementia and their carers, Narek Bido, manager of Recovery Scotland and Norma Howarth, locality manager for Change, Grow, Learn. “The breadth of issues discussed and the open, shared learning from all sides was welcome,” continue Anthea, “He really wants to see how the vision for a Scotland that leads on a Wellbeing Economy can be achieved and incorporate new structures where the third sector has an equal and valued relationship with the NHS and our Health and Social Care partners. It was a welcome meeting and one that we are grateful to the Cabinet Secretary for making happen.”

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