The cross party Health Devolution Commission, co-chaired by Andy Burnham and Norman Lamb, has recently published a response to the Integration and Innovation White Paper, which was published by the Department of Health and Social Care on 11th February.
The White Paper is primarily about reform of the structures and ‘wiring’ of the NHS in England and ways that that the NHS may work more closely with Local Government and the social care system to achieve the objectives of the NHS Long Term Plan. The shift from competition to collaboration as the organising principle of the NHS is a major and welcome change to its way of working.
The Health Devolution Commission reports that the proposals are a positive and strong foundation to build equal partnerships between Local Government and the NHS in order to improve health and wellbeing outcomes, improve care and treatment and deliver best value.
However, it also reports that the proposals do not address the need for fundamental reform and funding of social care and, therefore, in their current form, the proposals are not a comprehensive proposal for the integration of health and social care. Nor do they necessarily provide the necessary step change for improving and integrating public health, tackling health inequalities, ensuring parity of esteem for mental health services and addressing the social determinants of ill-health.
There are two key issues that the Commission feels require detailed examination before the White Paper becomes law:
- the purpose of the proposed ICS reforms;
- where power will really lie when the reforms become law.
From these arise twelve specific questions that the Commission believes need to be answered by the Government before the White Paper becomes a Bill and then law.
The Commission will therefore be holding two evidence sessions (by Zoom) to examine these two issues and address the twelve questions
Roundtable 1 – What is the purpose of integrated care system; health in all policies, tackling health inequalities and a voice for patients?
Chaired by Rt Hon Norman Lamb
Monday 26th April 3:30 – 5:00pm
- Professor Michael Marmot – on health inequalities
- Anita Charlesworth, The Health Foundation – on health in all policies
- Imelda Redmond from HealthWatch – on patient voice
- Simon Stevens – NHSE
Roundtable 2 – Integrated care system governance; where will the power really lie?
Chaired by Rt Hon Andy Burnham
Friday 21st May 2:00 – 3:30pm
- Third sector
To register your interest in attending one or more of these events please email email@example.com.
The Health Devolution Commission would also like to invite written evidence (2 page max) in response to the 12 questions asked – please answer as many or as few as you wish but please note two pages is the absolute limit! The deadline for submissions is the 26th of April.