The Birmingham and Solihull (BSol) Allied Health Professionals (AHP) Faculty was established in 2020 by the ICS AHP Council through a national Health Education England (HEE) test bed funding to facilitate system wide collaboration across AHP professions between health, social care and education providers.
The BSol AHP Faculty and Council focuses on the supply, education and training of allied health professional (AHP) staff and to ensure future growth of its workforce in our region. It reports into regional HEE and NHSE/I AHP board and links into the Education Partnership Group (EPG) locally.
The BSol AHP Council membership includes Chief AHPs and senior partners from health and social care including independent sector organisations within the BSol ICS. The council provides strategic vision, leadership and system solutions to the workforce challenges and share innovative practice.
The BSol AHP Faculty consists of around 70 members across 14 allied health professions representing health, social care, education and training providers, arm’s length bodies (ALB), and HEE representatives working together to achieve workforce transformation across the BSol ICS.
Professions within the faculty include chiropodists/podiatrists, dietitians, orthoptists, paramedics, physiotherapists, diagnostic and therapeutic radiography, speech and language therapists, occupational therapists, operating department practitioner (ODPs) and art, music and drama therapists.
The purpose of the council and faculty is to:
- Support the implementation of the NHS Long Term Plan and People Plan
- Create systemwide leadership and networking
- Act as a source of expertise for AHP practice and innovation
- Support programmes of work that stimulate and deliver sustainable workforce growth, development and supply
- Respond as a system to national calls to action from NHSE/I and Health Education England (HEE).
The achievements of AHP Faculty and Council in the past year include:
- Apprenticeships – Recruited 51 AHP apprentices, with more planned for this year
- AHP Support Workforce Development – Mapping of qualifications in progress with our existing support workforce against the HEE Support workforce competency, education and career development framework. Submitted 20 good practise Support worker case exemplars
- Return to Practice– RtP AHPs are being supported and collaborating with Birmingham City University in the development and delivery of national AHP RtP e-learning modules and identifying ways to increase local RtP placement offers
- International Recruitment – 23 international recruits are directly employed into the organisations from NHS Jobs, engaged in BSol International Recruitment Programme Board
- Retention and Support for the newly-qualified workforce/early careers – provided BSol AHP preceptorship provision and 3 early retention / Preceptorship case exemplars to HEE
- Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) – Ongoing work across BSOL organisations AHPs with a specific focus on mapping and improving the ethnic minority representation across the professions
- Workforce Planning – A system-wide data cleanse of all AHP ESR data to ensure that all AHP staff can be accurately identified and categorised consistently to assist with effective workforce planning.
Srihari (Hari) Tippa BSol AHP Council and Faculty Development Project Lead aid that “provider trusts are close to achieving fair share model capacity for student intake by exploring different models of providing placements.” He also highlighted some impressive figures, saying “the groups have also seen a 309% increase in response rate from NETS AHP students with 92% recommending us as a provider.”
You can read more about the AHP Council and Faculty and it’s achievements and future plans in the BSol ICS People Board – Our Achievements document, which will be published in June.