Joining up health and social care personal budgets: key points on implementation

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This briefing outlines the key themes from a senior professionals workshop on joining up personal budgets, at the King’s Fund. It sets out practical approaches to implementation that might be considered by local leaders as they develop their approaches to integrating personal budgets. 

It is intended to be useful to all commissioners and providers who are considering, or already leading, local deployment of personal budgets in health, and is particularly relevant to leaders and managers who are considering how to join up personal budgets in health with personal budgets in social care.

The key themes explored in the briefing, alongside case studies and practical approaches to implementation are:

  • Joint personal budgets can be a powerful mechanism for both integration and personalisation.
  • Judge success by person-centred outcomes, not by hours or numbers.
  • Use the experience of personal budgets in social care.
  • Active, ongoing leadership support is vital.
  • More advice, information and support for potential users and their carers will help drive demand locally.
  • GPs can be valuable as champions.

Key practical approaches to implementation that are discussed include:

  • Collecting and promoting success stories of improved outcomes
  • Use of advocates and brokers
  • Single care coordinator role
  • Integrated care and support plans
  • Co-production and co-development
  • Closer working between commissioners and providers
  • Releasing and aligning money
  • Understanding and managing risk

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