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    News: Public Bodies (Joint Working) (Scotland) Bill

    31st May 2013

    The Public Bodies (Joint Working) Scotland Bill has been introduced to the Scottish Parliament and published today.

    The Bill provides the framework which will support improvement of the quality and consistency of health and social care services through the integration of health and social care in Scotland. This framework permits integration of other local authority services with health services. The Scottish Ministers intend to use the framework to integrate adult health and social care services as a minimum, and for statutory partners to decide locally whether to include other functions in their integrated arrangements

    In summary the Bill:

    • Provides for national outcomes for health and wellbeing, and for delivery of which Health Boards and local authorities will be accountable to the Scottish Ministers and the public 
    •  Sets out principles for planning and delivery of integrated functions, which local authorities, Health Boards and joint integration boards will be required to have regard to. They set out that the main purpose of integrated services is to improve the wellbeing of recipients, as well as an expectation that planning and delivery will take account of key principles relating to integrated delivery; the requirement to balance the needs of individuals with the overall needs of the population; anticipation and prevention of need; and effective use of resources. 
    • Establishes integration joint boards and integration joint monitoring committees as the partnership arrangements for the governance and oversight of health and social care services. The Bill will remove Community Health Partnerships from statute. 
    • Requires Health Board and local authority partners to enter into arrangements (the integration plan) to delegate functions and appropriate resources to ensure the effective delivery of those functions. The Bill provides two options for integrating budgets and functions. First, delegation to an integration joint board established as a body corporate - in this case the Health Board and the local authority agree the amount of resources to be committed by each partner for the delivery of services to support the functions delegated. Second, delegation between partners. In this case the Health Board and/or local authority delegates functions and the corresponding amount of resource, to the other partner.
    • Requires integration joint boards to appoint a chief officer, who will through the board be jointly accountable to the constituent Health Board and local authorities, responsible for the management of the integrated budget and the delivery of services for the area of the integration plan. The chief officer will also lead the development and delivery of the strategic plan for the joint board. 
    • Requires integration joint boards, and Health Boards or local authorities to whom functions are delegated acting in the capacity of ―integration authority‖ to prepare a strategic plan for the area, which sets out arrangements for delivery of integration functions and how it will meet the national health and wellbeing outcomes. The integration authority will be required to involve a range of partners in the development of the plan and consult widely. In addition, locality planning duties will require the integration authority to make suitable arrangements to consult and plan locally for the needs of its population. 
    • Delivers opportunities for more effective use of public services and resources by allowing for Health Boards to be able to contract on behalf of other Health Boards for contracts which involve providing facilities, and by allowing the Scottish Ministers to form a wider range joint ventures structures to collaborate effectively with local authorities and enable a joint approach to asset management and disposal.
    • Provides for the extension of the Common Services Agency‘s ability to deliver shared services to public bodies including local authorities.
    • Enables the Scottish Ministers to extend the range of bodies able to participate in the CNORIS scheme for meeting losses and liabilities of certain health service bodies. The scheme is established for relevant bodies to meet expenses arising from any loss or damage to their property; and liabilities to third parties for loss, damage or injury arising from the carrying out of the functions of the scheme members. The Bill amends the bodies able to participate in the scheme to include local authorities and integration joint boards.

    To view the Bill as it has been introduced, as well as its accompanying documentation, click here.

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    Care InspectorateCare Information ScotlandSSSCSSKSIRISSScottish Government