CSP to give evidence on integration to National Audit Office

The CSP is to meet with the National Audit Office (NAO) to contribute to its report into integrating health and social care.


The NAO will consider how the NHS and councils can meet demand for services more effectively

The finance watchdog’s report will consider how health bodies and local authorities can manage and meet demand for services more effectively, while also saving money.

The CSP is one of a number of bodies invited to give evidence for the report, and a CSP team is due to meet the NAO this autumn.

Among the examples of successful integration that the CSP will highlight is the work of community learning disability teams in east Dorset, Poole and Bournemouth.

The teams include physiotherapists, social workers, learning disability nurses, occupational therapists, psychologists and psychiatrists. The service is funded by the county and borough councils and Dorset HealthCare University Trust.

There are about 400 clients who receive physiotherapy in each of the three geographical areas. Physios within the integrated teams adapt exercise programmes and information for the client’s individual abilities to encourage maximum participation.

Integration success

The integrated community learning disability teams were formed in 2011. Carrie Clarke, a clinical specialist physiotherapist in east Dorset, said the success of the teams was based on effective communication, acceptance of change from all, and a proactive approach from staff.

‘Clear management structure and funding streams right from the start meant that details were thought through well in advance, down to minor things such as where money for office supplies would come from,’ she said.

The CSP has also submitted evidence to the House of Commons Communities and Local Government Committee’s ongoing report into adult social care. The evidence focused on areas where rehabilitative and preventive services could reduce adult social care needs. It highlighted learning from physiotherapists on how this could be achieved through integrated working.

Underfunding threat

It also set out how underfunding in both the NHS and social care is hampering the development of positive initiatives like those above and the urgent need for investment in integration.

The NAO said it expected its report on health and social care integration to be published early next year.

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