Health bosses have unveiled plans to improve services in Sussex over the next ten years. Among key pledges to be announced today are tackling hospital infections such as c-difficile and MRSA and making medical tests available in high streets.

Candy Morris, chief executive of NHS South East Coast Strategic Health Authority, outlines her plans to The Argus.

Bold and ambitious new aspirations for patients using NHS services in the county will be a major focus over the coming weeks and months.

Today, the NHS South East Coast Strategic Health Authority, regional headquarters of the NHS, is setting out these aspirations as part of a ten-year vision for the region.

There are pledges on life expectancy, on obesity, on heart attacks and on hospital acquired infections (which I know is a particular concern for people in the county).

There are pledges to help people stay healthy and lead healthier lives, as well as plans to enable diagnostic testing in the high street.

The vision - called Healthier people, excellent care - has been shaped by clinicians and guided by local people.

The plan being set out today is not therefore a top-down initiative - it is a local vision created by local people.

The vision for Sussex, as in the rest of Britain, has involved listening to hundreds of people, understanding and appreciating what they have said, what they want and how they want to be cared for. Any changes will be decided locally, led by clinicians and patients, public and staff.

Of course, that is not to say there isn't already lots of good work going on across Sussex and elsewhere in the South East Coast - such as the new system for raising alerts about sick children, designed by Alan Monaghan, paediatric intensive care charge nurse at the Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals Trust.

Alan has developed a new method for alerting staff when very ill children are at risk of getting worse by means of an "early warning score".

This approach has resulted in early detection and proactive treatment and has reduced the number of unplanned admissions to paediatric intensive care units to zero.

The paediatric early warning score - based on an analysis of observation charts and three main triggers - not only benefits young patients but also assists staff in their work.

The scoring method has now been shared with other NHS organisations and is being developed for use by the emergency services.

It has even been adopted internationally by centres in New Zealand and the US, where one centre claims it has cut its acute emergency calls by half during a six-month trial period.

In this way, our vision is about identifying where we are excellent already and ensuring best practice is shared so that we can be excellent everywhere.

Above all, it is not about closing hospitals or services, this is about improving care so that patients and the public across the South East Coast have the best health and healthcare possible.

We want to reduce health inequalities, achieve our vision and ensure we are on course to deliver fair, safe, effective, personalised, locally accountable services.

Finally, I should emphasise that this is very much the start, not the end. We want to know what you think about the vision and how it will be implemented.

Consultation on these plans will take place over the summer and the local NHS will then report back on what you have said. I hope you will agree with me that these are bold aspirations.

And that they deserve our support.

Health Minister Lord Darzi said: "I have spent the past year travelling around the country, listening to what clinicians, NHS staff, patients and the public think is most valuable about NHS services and what they would like to see change. Now each region of the NHS is doing the same, producing their vision for the future of services in their area based on the needs of their local communities.

"Local clinicians, staff, patients, carers and the public have all made valuable contributions in producing this ambitious and inspiring vision. I would like to ask all those who have helped so far for their continued engagement to deliver a fair, safe, equitable, personalised and locally accountable NHS for the future."