King's Fund: Ensuring virtual wards are a positive option for the future
Virtual wards have the potential to improve patient experience by enabling them to receive care at home, and to alleviate workforce pressures by freeing up staff time.
However, there is still a lot of work to be done to improve capacity and use of virtual wards if patients and staff are to feel the benefits. Additionally, there are still extensive variations progress and use of virtual wards - operationally, digitally and financially - across the NHS and integrated care systems (ICS). With central funding coming to an end, all parts of the health and care system face practical challenges in making virtual wards a positive option for the future.
Against this backdrop, this panel discussion will bring together experts to discuss:
how to build a model for sustainable virtual wards that meets the immediate challenges of the health and care system, but also aligns with the NHS vision and aspirations for the future
what patients and communities want from virtual wards and how their voices can shape future services
what opportunities there are for virtual services to enable better integration between partners across the health and care system, as well as providing better working options and flexibility for staff.