Audit Scotland have been looking at the pace of change towards new models of health and social care and have concluded that the transformation needed is not happening fast enough.
While they highlight examples of innovative work practices in some areas of the country, these are largely small scale. Overall, the indication is that a widespread shift is happening too slowly to deliver the Scottish Government’s vision of enabling everyone to live longer, healthier lives at home or in a homely setting, by 2020.
The report identifies a lack of national leadership and clear planning as the main barriers to the wider change urgently required if Scotland’s health and social care services are to adapt to increasing pressures.
According to Auditor General, Caroline Gardiner, “the Scottish Government must produce comprehensive long-term plans for realising its 2020 Vision, and work to reduce the barriers that hold local bodies back from creating new ways of working that meet the changing needs of their communities.” She added, “an ambitious vision can be a catalyst for change but, without a clear and detailed plan of action, there’s a risk that ambition is overtaken by circumstances.”
The report also references the pivotal role of health and social care integration in transforming how services are delivered, with new integration authorities (IAs) set to go live on 1 April 2016.