The Care Quality Commission (CQC) carried out a series of ‘local system reviews’, looking at how local services are working together to meet the needs of people who move between health and care services – with a focus on people over 65.
The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) commissioned CQC to undertake the 20 of the ‘local system reviews’ and SCIE to provide independent support to local systems to assist with the development of plans that addressed CQC’s findings and recommendations.
The Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE) shares insights from its work with those areas in a summary paper published today.
The report, which will be of value to local leaders managing integration plans, includes the following findings:
- Health and social care organisations want to work together, but too often prioritise their own goals over shared responsibility
- Even where individual services are good, the system as a whole can function poorly
- Critical to success is maturity of relationships and strength of system governance.
The report says that areas developing plans should take such action as:
- Engage all local partners in planning, including people who use services and carers, the voluntary, independent and community sectors
- Clarify, and where necessary, create or strengthen governance arrangements to ensure ownership and delivery of action plans are clear
- Balance short-term fixes with longer-term, sustainable improvements.
SCIE’s chief executive Tony Hunter says: “Making full use of the insights, perspectives and advice of those using health and care services is the key to getting us get beyond traditional boundaries and focusing on what matters. The overall message is that it’s all about people. We need to look at what makes a difference to people’s experiences and outcomes. I’ve been really impressed by how most localities have people showing such energy and commitment to making that difference.”