The joint NECA/NHS Commission for Health and Social Care Integration was established as part of the proposed devolution deal agreed between NECA and central government in September 2015. This recognised that despite having strong health and care services across the region and life expectancy increasing faster than other parts of the country, there are still too many residents suffering from poor health and wellbeing, with many unable to work and trapped in a cycle of poverty.

In January 2016 Duncan Selbie, chief executive of Public Health England, was appointed to chair the Commission and he has been supported by four members who are national experts in their own fields in health and social care area, Tom Wright, chief executive of Age UK; Professor Dame Carol Black, expert advisor to Public Health England and NHS England on health, work and wellbeing; Rob Whiteman, chief executive of the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy; and Dr Amit Bhargava, clinical chief officer for NHS Crawley Clinical Commissioning Group and executive board member of the NHS Alliance

For further information on the commission members, please click here.

Their work has focused on three core themes – a shift to prevention, health, wellbeing and productivity and system leadership and governance.

The Commission has worked closely with local stakeholders, seeking views from across the region through a call for evidence and holding listening events in each of the seven local authority areas as well as an event for the voluntary, community and social enterprise sector. This resulted in more than 150 documents being submitted from over 80 individuals and organisations and conversations with hundreds of people with an interest in health and social care.

You can find more details and a copy of the call for evidence document by clicking here.

Feedback from this activity has informed the report and Commission members have also worked collaboratively with local health and care organisations, testing emerging thinking with a steering group of representatives of NECA and NHS partners.

Report: ‘Health and wealth: closing the gap in the North East’

The report published on the 11th October 2016, ‘Health and wealth: closing the gap in the North East’ sets out ten far reaching recommendations for health and care leaders across County Durham, Gateshead, Newcastle, Northumberland, North Tyneside, South Tyneside and Sunderland to break the vicious circle of poor health and poverty. These cover:

• Radically increasing spend on prevention which would include the establishment of a dedicated, cross-system prevention fund and including action to tackle inequalities in all policy decisions

• Providing a much greater focus on supporting people to get back to work after illness, including developing a training programme for Primary Care Staff, enhancing local services for people with mental health conditions to avoid sickness absence, and encouraging employers to improve to workplace wellbeing

• Health and care leaders looking beyond the interests of their own organisations to ensure that funding is used most effectively to support health and wellbeing

• Bringing together local authorities, NHS organisations and the community and voluntary sector through new governance arrangements to drive forward these recommendations.

For a copy of the full report, please click here, or for the Executive Summary click here.

Useful Documents

You can find a copy of the Health and Social Care Integration Commission framing document, a list of the Steering Group members, and a frequently asked question and answer briefing at the bottom of this page.

Summary of the Evidence Submitted

The report below summarises some of the evidence contained within the responses and shows how it has informed the recommendations of the Commission.
However it has proved difficult to do justice within the confines of this report to the range and complexity of the contributions received from a range of individuals and organisations.

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Commission for Health and Social Care Integration in the North East