The Health & Wellbeing Board, The Joint Health & Wellbeing Strategy and The Better Care Plan

The 2012 Health & Social Care Act required all upper-tier local authorities to set up a Health & Wellbeing Board (HWB). These are partnership bodies bringing together local Councillors, NHS commissioners, senior council officers and local people.

One of the main duties of the Health and Wellbeing Board is to publish a Joint Health & Wellbeing Strategy. In 2013 the Brighton & Hove Health and Wellbeing Board published its strategy, which focused on five priority areas where it could make the greatest impact.  These are:

  • smoking
  • emotional health and wellbeing (including mental health)
  • healthy weight and good nutrition
  • cancer and access to cancer screening
  • dementia

This section summarises the actions set out in the strategy and highlights action planned in five additional areas:

  • alcohol
  • substance misuse
  • sexual health
  • teenage pregnancy
  • healthy ageing

Looking ahead, from 2014/15 the Health and Wellbeing Board will be overseeing the development of the Better Care Plan for Brighton and Hove. It will transform how local health and social care services for some of our most vulnerable residents are delivered so that people are provided with better integrated care and support. The plan will concentrate on delivering an integrated model of care for people who are ‘frail’, including both older people who are frail and other people who have complex needs (e.g. people with mental health needs). There will also be a specific focus on addressing the needs of homeless people, many of whom experience very poor health and wellbeing outcomes.   

The vision is to support them stay healthy and well by providing "whole person care", promoting independence and enabling people to fulfil their potential.  Key elements of the plan include:

  • The community & voluntary sector will play an active role in supporting people to stay well
  • There will be an emphasis on reabling care, including the use of assistive technology to support people to maximise their independence. 
  • Individuals will be empowered to direct & personalise their care and support based on their individual needs.
  • GP Practices will be at the heart of co-ordinating a person’s  care with support from a multi-disciplinary team
  • The independent  care sector and the  local community and voluntary sector will be encouraged  to be active partners in service delivery
  • Care will be co-ordinated in a single place to ensure service users and carers only need to tell their story once.
  • Care  Co-ordinators will take responsibility for active co-ordination of care for the full range of support (from lifestyle support to acute care)
  • Service users and their carers will be listened to and drive the model of care
  • More people will be supported in a community setting
  • Access to professional support  will be available 24/7