Recap: October's Partnership Scheme event

PRSB’s fourth partner event centred around our Personalised Care and Support Plan (PCSP) standard and we were pleased to welcome a range of partner representatives and Advisory Board members to the discussion.  We discussed the standard’s importance to furthering personalised care, the content of the standard and heard about implementing it from a system supplier.

Professor Alf Collins, Clinical Director of the Personalised Care Group at NHS England, gave an overview of the importance of personalised care and engaging people as active partners in their care  rather than passive receivers of their care. Alf said that the PCSP is ‘at the heart of defining and spreading good practice’; it can help reduce variation in care and allow continuity of care from one care setting to another.

October is international health literacy month and as such, it was great to hear Alf Collins speak to the importance of health literacy during the event. He explained that people need information from clinicians on their treatment to correctly self-care and this should be provided by ensuring that all notes and letters are written directly to them and in plain, clear language. He added, it should be  ‘primarily for the benefit of patients but translatable by clinicians’.

Following Alf, PRSB Executive Clinical Director, Dr Nilesh Bharakhada, went through the design and development of the standard itself and took questions on the standard’s implementation at supplier level. The standard was originally developed in 2018 to allow care plans to be exchanged and accessed consistently across all care settings and was updated this year so that it could support people accessing community mental health services.

The last speaker was Cheryl Cowley, CCIO of Black Pear Software and a nurse by training, who explained Black Pear’s experience in implementing the standard and suggested improvements for the standard as it matures. Cheryl explained that Black Pear successfully integrated the About Me and Personalised Care and Support Plan standards with its products, adding information such as clinical definitions, and looks forward to continually working with PRSB to strengthen the standard as it becomes more widely used and implemented.

PRSB CEO Lorraine Foley wrote for TechUK on the importance of the Partnership Scheme and you can read more about our Partner Scheme on our website. You can also get in touch by emailing

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