Health and wellbeing boards: where next?

    Health and Social Care

    Visual minutes from a health and social care integration discussion

    In the midst of intense political debate about the future of health and social care, one piece of common ground is the continued existence of health and wellbeing boards (HWBs) and the likelihood of them being given additional roles and responsibilities. But are the boards in a position to do so?

    This is one of the questions that we have addressed in recent reports for the Local Government Association (Stick with it!) and London Councils (Conquering the Twin Peaks).

    These reports are based on a combination of an on-line survey, stakeholder interviews and case study work with a number of boards. The work for the LGA also analysed the results of health and wellbeing peer challenges.

    Our overall conclusion is that HWBs are not yet fulfilling their full potential. The role of the chair is critically important, and that the action necessary to fulfill that potential includes:

    • Ditching some of the paraphernalia associated with being a council committee;
    • Focusing on the board as an institution rather than a meeting;
    • Tighter prioritisation and the discipline to stick with agreed priorities;
    • Developing strategies which have real traction with key agencies.

    Copies of the reports are available here.

    Stick With It – produced for the LGA

    Conquering Twin Peaks – produced for London Councils

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