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Meeting 7: Integration Joint Boards and Primary and Community Care

The seventh Stakeholder Reference Group (SRG) for the Moving Forward Together (MFT) Programme took place on Tuesday 27th of February. The Group of 13 patient, service user and carer representatives (details at the end) heard a presentation by Susanne Millar, Chief Officer (Strategy and Operations) & Chief Social Work Officer, Glasgow City Health and Social Care Partnership, and engaged in discussion about the Integration Joint Boards (IJBs), the services they direct via Health and Social Care Partnerships and their role in transformation.

Susanne outlined the function of IJBs and how, since their formation in 2014, they were key to how healthcare and social care service were planned, commissioned and delivered for local populations. She explained that for the Programme a tiered model had been used to consider how services would be delivered.  Across Glasgow and Clyde the 6 IJBs had identified common priority areas and that these were central to this process and reflected national policy. She said overall they focussed heavily on self management and care being delivered at or close to people’s homes.

She then spent time discussing the priority areas in more detail with examples such supporting more older people to live at home with enhanced care packages, anticipatory care plans and intermediate care models had contributed to reducing time spent in hospital. However for this to happen people, their family, carers and sometimes service providers had to take risk to enable and improve health.

She  said that there needs to be better public awareness of IJBs as the future will bring ever closer integration with more joint working and teams that span health and social care – something that has been highlighted as critical to the MFT Programme. However, there also needs to be wider and ongoing conversation with the public about the political and economic factors and the financial situation within public services that will have implications on how services are planned and delivered in am more practical way.

The Group members then asked questions and led discussion on a number of topics stating that most of them were unaware of IJBs and their role in health and social care provision – therefore more need to be done to promote them. There was discussion on how they were financed and their governance, assurance and how they engage people in their locality planning. There was talk of the financial pressures, cuts to some areas such as the voluntary sector and that engagement and local opinion was important to ensure services reflected local needs.

Members discussed the need to better use resources and recognised that the programme was looking at new ways of working to do this; however wider conversation with the public was needed to illustrate the pressures services faced in terms of staffing and resources. They also spoke about the ongoing need to educate people about how health and social care systems have changed so that they can access them better to stay health and prevent admission to hospital.

There was discussion about how the elements of and across the health and social care where interdependent and that these need managed and practically resourced to provide the best outcomes for those using them. However, to move forward the system needs to change and although some people will be uncomfortable with this we need to communicate this has to happen.