Plan to join up health and social care

Dr Phil Earnshaw, chariman of the Wakefield Allliance Consortium.
Dr Phil Earnshaw, chariman of the Wakefield Allliance Consortium.

NHS and council bosses are under pressure to draw up a radical overhaul of health and social care services to secure a share of £3.8bn.

They are required to integrate health and social care into a joint team which will provide more community care to cut the need for hospital admissions and save cash.

A plan must be in place by March in order to access a share of the Integration Transformation Fund (ITF) – cash the government has ring-fenced to pay for the changes – which would see councils and the NHS share staff and funding.

Dr Phil Earnshaw, chairman of NHS Wakefield Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “I think we’ll be in a great position to access our share of the funds.

“We have access to the fund if we come up with plans that are acceptable and transform things from where we are now to make things different and more integrated.”

Fears have been raised that the integration plan could be undermined by a proposed NHS funding formula, which would not take into account social deprivation and which could slash the district’s health budget. MPs met health bosses last week to discuss the issue.