Better Care Fund
Better Care Fund
The Government announced in June 2013 that from 2015/16, £3.8bn would be allocated to a Better Care Fund to transform health and social care by increasing integration between the two sectors.
The Better Care Fund (formerly known as the Integration Transformation Fund) is intended to incentivise the NHS and local government to work closer together focussed on patients. By increasing the integration of health and care services, the Government predicted that patients would stay independent and healthier for longer, unnecessary hospital stays will be prevented and patients and their families will have more confidence in the service being provided.
Each locality is required to submit a plan, jointly agreed by the CCGs and local authorities. Both organisations and the local Health and Wellbeing Board also needed to sign off on the plans to ensure agreement.
The local plans should explain in detail how localities will meet a number of criteria, including how they plan to provide:
- protection for social care services;
- seven-day care services to enable the local population to get care, and to prevent delayed hospital discharges and unnecessary hospital admissions at weekends;
- better sharing of information based on the patient’s NHS number, so an individual does not have to keep repeating information; and
- joint approaches to assessments and care planning.
The Fund provides an opportunity for the commissioning of a range of community pharmacy services, particularly those focussed on supporting patients following discharge from hospital and helping people to live independently in their own homes.
Further information on the Better Care Fund can be found on the NHS England website.
Background information on the Fund can be found in PSNC Briefing 100/13: The Integration Transformation Fund.