Staffordshire residents are to benefit from continued integrated health and social care in their homes and local communities – after a new deal is agreed until 2020.
After the creation of the largest integrated trust in the country in 2012, Staffordshire County Council and Staffordshire and Stoke on Trent Partnership Trust (SSOTP) have taken the opportunity to review existing arrangements and agree a new proposed contract to run from 2017 to 2020.
Alan White, Staffordshire County Council’s Cabinet Member for Health, Care and Wellbeing, said: “The support and care of a growing ageing population is both a key priority and pressure not just for the county, but for the whole country.
“As a county council, we want to promote independence so that more people can look after themselves and find support in their local communities. If people do require care then we would like them to be clear about the options available and how they will be paid for. Wherever possible we would like people to be able to be cared for in their homes and communities rather than in hospitals or care homes.”
“We have taken the opportunity to work with the Trust to see what has worked well and what can work even better and this new agreement now paves the way for the sustainable delivery of integrated care, focussed on the needs and benefits to Staffordshire residents, until at least 2020.”
As part of the new arrangements, SSOTP will assess and manage day-to-day care, reablement and occupational therapy for residents. The county council will take on the responsibility for buying long term care packages and management of the long-term care budget. Budget responsibilities for people incapable of managing their own finances due to a physical or mental health incapacity will also be transferred to the council in due course.
The new agreement has been approved by both the county council’s Cabinet and the partnership trust’s board. The decision and creation of the new agreement will be subject to a four week consultation with staff, partners and the public this autumn.
Stuart Poynor, Chief Executive of Staffordshire and Stoke-on-Trent Partnership NHS Trust, added “Over the last four years, I have personally witnessed the benefits that come from bringing together health and social care professionals. I know that the people of Staffordshire have received a better service as a result.
“Supporting older people and those with disabilities to live independently and at home is the right thing to do. The agreement that we’ve reached will secure the benefits of this for years to come.”