Sheffield praised for work on health and social care

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Sheffield has been praised for the city’s approach to ‘joined-up’ health and social care.

The £278 million ‘better care fund’, a pot of money which has been allocated to improve the way the NHS, local authorities and communities work together, will be launched next year.

It is the single biggest joint budget in the country.

The Health Services Journal welcomed Sheffield’s ‘ambitious’ approach in the light of ongoing problems with NHS finances, and warnings about the sustainability of many social care services throughout the UK.

It said the focus in the city was on the development of intermediate care, and patients would be helped to navigate the system.

Coun Mary Lea, cabinet member for health, care and independent living, said: “We have been really clear that we will to do whatever it takes in Sheffield to make health and social care services work for the people who need them.

“It’s great to see Sheffield singled out nationally for our innovative work in this way, but what really matters, as always, is that we’re finding a way to support the service users who rely on us in the face of huge financial challenges.”

Money in the better care fund needs to be spent in 2015/16.

Tim Furness, director of business planning and partnerships at NHS Sheffield Clinical Commissioning Group, said: “We have agreed to put together resources for commissioning health and social care because we believe together we can ensure service users have a better, more joined up experience of care and support, and because we think that working together will lead to better ways of meeting increasing demand for care with less resources. Together we will seek to get the most out of the Sheffield health and social care pound.”