Julie Morgan, Deputy Minister for Health and Social Services
Julie James, Minister for Housing and Local Government
The Integrated Care Fund (ICF) Annual Report 2018-2019 has been published today.
This report provides a national overview of the Integrated Care Fund in 2018-19 and describes how regional partnership boards have used ICF funding to help drive forward the integration of health, social care and housing.
Since established in 2014-2015, the ICF has evolved into the large scale programme it is today. From a discrete fund aimed at keeping older people independent and out of hospital or residential care, it now provides much needed integrated support for a wider range of citizens with care and support needs including those with a learning disability, autism, children with complex needs, carers and more recently children on the edge of care.
We are proud that across all the regions of Wales, the ICF funds projects and services that are delivering seamless health and social care to people, focusing on prevention and early intervention and helping people to live their lives their own way. Importantly, the fund is making a significant contribution to helping us deliver on our commitments in A Healthier Wales, which is a key delivery mechanism for the transformational Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act 2014.
We are clear that the ICF has been used to support a wide range of new and innovative ways of working which have the potential to influence future patterns of care and support and in some instances accommodation, for the better. There are now numerous multi-disciplinary teams of health, social care, housing and third sector professionals working together to develop tailored interventions to help individuals meet their well-being goals and improve their quality of life.
The seven regional partnership boards have ensured that ICF projects have been innovative, integrated and preventative. In 2018-2019, a total of £59 million of ICF programme funding was allocated for revenue projects and £30 million of ICF programme funding was allocated to produce capital projects across Wales via the regional partnership boards. This report showcases some of the excellent projects and services that have been developed and supported by the ICF.
Several of the new models of delivery developed and tested through the ICF have proved so successful that they have formed the foundation of larger scale transformation programmes funded through the new Transformation Fund.
There is no doubt that the ICF has initiated a step change in the way services are developed and delivered. The 2019 Wales Audit Office report recognises the important role the ICF has played in supporting the integration of health and social care and the development of regional partnership boards.
By making better use of resources through collaborative working and moving away from traditional ways of delivering services the ICF is supporting health and care services to be more person centred and provided at or closer to home. As result this is helping to reducing pressure on vital NHS and social care services.
However we recognise that the ICF must demonstrate best use of public money and its impact should be clearly evidenced. In support of this we will address the recommendations from the Wales Audit Office review of the fund so that we can take the learning from individual projects and describe the benefits and impacts of the ICF at a national programme level.
The ICF annual report will share some of the key learning that has occurred through delivery of the programme and provide a forward look to how we will seek to strengthen the programme further in 2019-21. Looking ahead, our current commitment is to fund the ICF until 2021. Any future funding programme will be informed by our planned evaluation of the fund and lessons learnt from the current programme.
Finally, we would like to acknowledge the excellent work of all the regional partnership boards in delivering the ICF and in coproducing this report. We would also like to acknowledge the crucial role RPB staff teams play in supporting the effective delivery of the RPB programmes of work and in helping Welsh Government to deliver on its ambitions set out in the Social Services and Wellbeing Act and A Healthier Wales.
By working together, in partnership we really are making a difference.