Health inequalities are the preventable, unfair and unjust differences in health status that arise from the unequal distribution of social, environmental and economic conditions within societies, which determine the risk of people getting ill, their ability to prevent sickness, or opportunities to take action and access treatment when ill health occurs.
COVID-19 has shone a harsh light on some of the health and wider inequalities that persist in our society and the disproportionate impact the pandemic has had on particular groups.
NHS England and NHS Improvement’s Core20PLUS5 approach aims to support the reduction of healthcare inequalities experienced by communities most at risk at both national and system level. The approach defines a target population cohort; i) the 20% most deprived and ii) ‘PLUS’ groups experiencing poorer than average care. It also identifies ‘5’ focus clinical areas requiring accelerated improvement – maternity, severe mental illness, chronic respiratory disease, early cancer diagnosis and hypertension case finding.
This award recognises innovative and creative initiatives which aim to reduce healthcare inequalities at a national or local level – especially those which align with the Core20PLUS5 approach. Therefore, award entries should have a focus on the most deprived communities, inclusion health groups (any population group that is socially excluded. This can include people who experience homelessness, drug and alcohol dependence, vulnerable migrants, Gypsy, Roma and Traveller communities, sex workers, people in contact with the justice system and victims of modern slavery, but can also include other socially excluded groups), ethnic minority communities and/or other groups experiencing poorer-than-average care. Initiatives could also relate specifically to one of the ‘5’ clinical area ambitions.
Judges are looking for entries that drive tangible improvements in access, experiences and outcomes for patients, carers, people and/or communities. Winners will be projects co-designed and co-produced with patients, built on strong local partnerships, that use data and insights effectively and intelligently to target interventions and demonstrate measurable impacts outlining what has actually made a difference to communities.
All NHS organisations (including providers, partnerships and systems), General Practice and primary care organisations.