Health Integration White Paper: CCN response

CCN Latest News, CCN News 2022 | 09 February 2022

Today the government has published its Integration White Paper, setting out proposals for closer integration between health and social care, and closer partnership working between the NHS and local government.

The white paper forms part of the government’s wider adult social care reforms package, and includes proposals for greater sharing of budgets between local authorities and the NHS, as well as further details on Integrated Care Partnerships and Integrated Care Systems.

Below, the County Councils Network responds to the announcement.

Cllr Martin Tett, Adult Social Care Spokesperson for the County Councils Network said:

“Today’s white paper is another important step on the integration journey that county authorities and their health partners have been on for a number of years. The flexibility for local authorities and the NHS to share budgets is welcome, as is an aspiration to use data more effectively.

“Whilst further funding will be needed to maximise the success of these proposals, not least in establishing an effective intermediate care offer jointly with the NHS, this is a white paper that recognises county authorities’ role in shaping their local health systems. We must now be given the tools to make this a reality.

“With county authorities offering the scale as place leaders in bringing together key public sector partners, it is critical that an individual from local government should be the ‘single accountable person’ to lead on Integrated Care Boards. Those upper-tier authorities should also be the ones who lead on devising the most effective local structures to focus on improving community care options and tackling the wider determinants of poor health, working alongside primary care partners.”