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Charity develops new programmes on child obesity and multiple long-term conditions

Guy's and St Thomas’ Charity is developing two programmes of work as part of a focused new approach to tackling major health issues in Lambeth and Southwark, and is calling on anyone with ideas to help shape them.

Alongside its work as the charity for Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust, the Charity is focusing on tackling major local health challenges, which are also prevalent in other urban, deprived and diverse areas. The first two of these programmes are now in development and they aim to: 

Despite significant improvements in health and life expectancy across Lambeth and Southwark over the past decades, both boroughs have some of the highest levels of childhood obesity in the country, with over 1 in 4 children being overweight or obese by the time they start secondary school. Alongside this, over 5,800 local people are living with three or more long-term conditions, often with very poor quality of life and at a significant cost to the NHS and others.

Guy’s and St Thomas’ Charity’s purpose is to work with Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust and other partners to improve the health of people in Lambeth and Southwark. Through this new programmatic approach, the Charity also aims to build a body of knowledge and share lessons of what works and doesn’t work with others facing similar challenges elsewhere.

The Charity has released a short film which describes how it supports new approaches in health and invites anyone with good ideas to start a conversation. The film features people involved in major local health improvements supported by the Charity, like Jonty Heaversedge, Chair of NHS Southwark Clinical Commissioning Group.

“As we move into an era of even greater financial austerity, we’re going to need the help of organisations like Guy’s and St Thomas’ Charity to allow us to think much more innovative and creatively. The Charity brings great minds and energy to particular issues and it’s really made a difference”, said Jonty.

Carys Barton, lead heart failure specialist nurse at Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust, is another professional featured in the film. Carys is part of the team across Guy’s and St Thomas’, King’s College Hospital and South London and Maudsley NHS trusts that is implementing an ambitious new project to improve health and care for thousands of local people living with heart failure, who often also have other long-term conditions.

“The Charity has made a big difference to the care we’ve been able to deliver. If we were to stay doing what we were doing, we would get the same results. We’ve been able to innovate within our project, to create seamless care for our patients from the hospital team out to the community team”, said Carys.

During this initial development phase, the Charity wants to learn from anyone with ideas, insight or resources that could help shape the programmes. If you’re interested in taking part, start a conversation today.