New care scheme ‘to save St Helens £80m’

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Welcome to St Helens. Pic © Wikimedia Commons

A new social care system aimed at saving St Helens Council £80 million by 2020 is on course to launch later this year.

St Helens Cares has been set up to create a sustainable health and social care system to meet the needs of locals.

The goal is to bring together a wide range of public service organisations to take joint responsibility for the quality of care and for managing funding.

A spokesperson for St Helens Cares told JMU Journalism: “Up and down the country health and social care funding is running out.

“People are living for longer and they need more access to services than ever before. In St Helens, things are no different.

“St Helens Cares is the new approach to delivering health, social care and other forms of community care in St Helens. We need the help of the public to shape the future of health and social care and welcome their views and experiences.”

YouTube: Anthony Jones / AJ Media

Speaking at a council people’s board meeting last week, Caroline Barlow, assistant director for adult social care, said: “All of our main providers have signed up for the process, so we’re all committed to the vision and aims of St Helens Cares.

“And we are hopeful the first iteration of that will actually be in place by October 2018.”

It is proposed that the costs of the system are split between the council, St Helens and Knowsley Teaching Hospital NHS Trust, and the local clinical care commissioning group (CCG).

Last month, it was announced that Professor Sarah O’Brien has been appointed as the strategic director of people’s services, alongside holding the role of clinical accountable officer for St Helens CCG.

The purpose of the creation of the joint role is said to be to enable the further union of the council and the CCG in St Helens.

About Joanne Cunliffe, JMU Journalism