The NHS must focus on the potential 'gains in the community' rather than on the 'loss of hospitals', when discussing the transfer of workload from acute to primary care settings, NHS Confederation chief executive Mike Farrar has urged.
Addressing delegates at the QNI Conference in London earlier this week, Mr Farrar stressed a move from acute care to care at home is inevitable and the 'sustainable future of the NHS is in the community,'
Mr Farrar said: 'We need to change the nature of the debate so the public mood is about patients staying home for longer... and having a good death at home.
'We need to value community nurses and create systems that support community services. It is not right that hospitals hold sway for the future while cuts are made [to budgets] in the community.'
'We need an incentive system that rewards for spending time in the community.'
He concluded: 'The focal point of care and the power of service will be in the home. We have to put this at the forefront of science. We have to get this right.'