Dorset Sustainability and Transformation Plan

Improving health, care and finance for local people by 2021

We want health services where patients are in control of consistently high-quality care that meets their needs.

Our ambition is to see every person in Dorset stay healthy for longer and feel more confident and supported in managing their own health. In our vision, everyone takes prevention and healthy living seriously.

We are supporting our partners in health to deliver a Sustainability and Transformation Plan (STP) which sets out how we will change our health and care system to provide services to better meet the needs of local people.

Delivering the plan means overcoming some significant challenges including:

  • An aging population and increased demand for services. In addition, there are unacceptable inequalities in the life expectancy of different groups of people in Dorset, including those with mental health problems. To improve the health and wellbeing of the current and future population we have to change.
  • There is too much variation in the quality of our health and care services. We do not always have the right staff with the right skills in the right place at the right time. In most cases local services are good, but we have some areas that do not meet the national quality standards. To improve the care and quality of the services we provide we have to change.
  • If we carry on as we are now, we forecast that our annual financial gap over the five-year period 2016/17 to 2020/21 is £229million, which includes a shortfall of £20million on specialised services. Local authorities are having to save more than £70million over the next four years. As our funding cannot keep pace with growth in demands and costs, and to get the most from the money we do have, we have to change.

The best way to achieve the scale of change needed is for all of the NHS and local authority organisations to work more closely together, planning for and providing services in partnership that are stronger, more successful and sustainable.

More information is available on the Dorset Healthcare website: