In a news release this morning (19 March 2015) the Scottish Government said it is to allocate £200m over two years to support the implementation of health and social care integration.
According to the release the investment will extend the current Integrated Care Fund into 2016/17 and 2017/18, and comes on top of £100 million of funding already allocated for 2015/16. The money will be distributed among the 32 local NHS and social care partnerships that have been set up as part of the move towards integrated services.
The Integrated Care Fund forms part of over half a billion pounds of Government investment over the next three years that will be used to support integration, including £100 million over three years for delayed discharge, and £30 million over three years for Telehealth.
The Integrated Care Fund supports the implementation of plans to bring together health and local authority care services by 1 April 2016. This will give the partnerships the resources to focus on preventative care and early intervention as well as support for people with multiple and long-term conditions.
Health Secretary Shona Robison made the announcement during a visit this morning to the Wester Hailes Healthy Living Centre – a joint NHS Lothian and City of Edinburgh Council facility that provides a range of integrated health, social care and family support services.
Later, in the Scottish Parliament, in her motion Health Secretary Shona Robison highlighted the progress toward the implementation of the integration of health and social care, with new integration joint boards being established from 1 April 2015 in line with legislation (according to a BBC report).
Ms Robison welcomed the resources that are being invested to deliver integration, supported the agreement between COSLA and the Scottish government on the core suite of indicators for integration and highlighted the commitment for NHS boards and local authorities to work together to deliver benefits for their patients and service users.
She said she believes that integration is vital to realising the 2020 vision for health and social care, and providing the best caring environments for the people of Scotland.