Go-ahead for £7m Hartlepool health boost bid

Ali Wilson
Ali Wilson

AN innovative plan which will result in more partnership working between health and social care in Hartlepool and improved services for local people has been given the go-ahead.

The Hartlepool Health & Wellbeing Board recently gave the green light to the Better Care Fund plans which will involve bringing together a range of existing funding streams to create a pooled budget of just under £7.5m for Hartlepool from April 2015 to improve services for vulnerable adults, particularly those aged 65 and over.

The Better Care Fund is a national initiative that aims to transform local services by so that more people can be cared for in the community and outcomes for vulnerable adults are improved.

The success of Better Care Fund plans will be measured based on how many people are supported at home rather than being admitted to hospital or residential care, how people are supported when they are discharged from hospital and what people think about the services they receive.

Local plans will support a range of low level services that provide help to people in their own homes and communities, help people to live in their homes longer and improve services for people with dementia.

Coun Christopher Akers-Belcher, chairman of the Health & Wellbeing Board, said “We have an excellent track record of working in partnership in Hartlepool and the Better Care Fund plan presents yet another opportunity to make a real difference to people’s lives in the town.”

The plans have been developed by Hartlepool Borough Council and Hartlepool & Stockton on Tees Clinical Commissioning Group over the last year with input from other health organisations.

Ali Wilson, chief officer of Hartlepool & Stockton on Tees Clinical Commissioning Group, said “The plan has approval from the Government and the Heath & Wellbeing Board and everyone is looking forward to its implementation. We listened to feedback from local people to ensure that it has a positive impact on health and social care services in the community.”

Gill Alexander, director of Child & Adult Services for Hartlepool Borough Council, added: “This is an exciting new development and we are committed to making sure our plans enable people to get the support they need as early as possible.”