Providers must be recognised in integration plans, says Care England

Professor Martin Green, Care England chief executive

Effective integration across care and health must recognise the sector’s independent providers, a leading representative body has said.

NHS England and NHS Improvement (NHSEI) have been consulting on steps to building integrated care systems. It has set out policy proposals and outlined plans as to how the systems are to become legislation by April 2022, subject to governmental approval.

Responding to the consultation, Care England said it supported the direction of the policy as it emphasised the need for more collaboration and integration across the health and social care system. However, the body said any integration must include a place for independent adult social care sector providers.

‘Adult social care is essential to the fabric of society, this has been seen in technicolour over the incredibly difficult past months so it is disappointing that NHSEI has failed to recognise the strategic relationship between health and social care providers in its future planning for integrated care,’ said Professor Martin Green, Care England chief executive.

‘As such an important part of the jigsaw, adult social care should not be fighting its case, rather NHS England should be focusing on a vision for the future incorporating a workforce plan and fairer funding to providers including continuing healthcare,’ he said.