The Public Bodies (Joint Working) (Scotland) Act 2014 aimed to integrate health and social care services, the aim being to ensure people receive the care they need at the right time and in the right place focussing on a community base and preventative care. The Act created new partnerships (known as joint boards (IJBs)) with responsibilities to integrate adult social care services, adult primary care and community health services and some hospital services. All 31 integration authorities were operational by 1 April 2016 (Highland has been operating a ‘lead agency model’ between NHS Highland and Highland Council since 2012. The governance arrangements for this model differ from the IJBs established in all other areas).
The IJBs cover a combination of local authority and health board areas and are responsible for a range of delegated functions set out in the legislation. Most have gone beyond the minimum scope, for example by including some children’s health services while others have included criminal social work services, children’s social work services and/or planned acute health services.
Budgets for IJBs for 2016-17 have yet to be finalised, but are expected to total over £9 billion.
The Committee will focus on the integration of health and social care as part of its consideration of the Scottish Government’s draft budget.
The Committee issued a survey to all integration authorities on various topics, including gathering information on the initial stages of operation. This will be followed by oral evidence from integration authorities and an evidence session with the Scottish Government on the wider health budget. The survey responses can be viewed here:
SPICe produced an analysis of all the survey responses received by the Committee:
The Committee published a report on Health and Social Care Integration Budgets on 30 November 2016.
On 15 December the Cabinet Secretary for Health and Sport wrote to the Convener in response to the Committee's report on Health and Social Care Integration Budgets.
On 9 February the Cabinet Secretary for Health and Sport wrote to the Convener to provide some additional information as requested at the Committee meeting of 21 December.