The County council today championed a cause to link health and
social care to make the best use of limited funds in the face of rising demands.
Councillor Ian Bottrill explains:
"Local people want action when it comes to life and death issues. Forging links
between the Councils departments, including Social Service and our partners in
health care, makes great sense and provides the direct action people want.
"We have already proved that this can work. The cold winters are when the elderly
are at their most vulnerable.
"By working with the Health Authority we targeted extra support to the elderly to
prevent unnecessary hospital admissions and help them to be safe and well in their homes.
This also freed up beds for others in need.
"We are taking a wider look at how our services can benefit people across the
board. We have taken an audit of health related issues with all our Council departments
from education, to transport. Each department is beginning the process of highlighting how
they can offer joint help.
"The results are encouraging and we will be inviting Tessa Jowell MP, Minister of
State for Public Health to visit Warwickshire to highlight the positive effect of such
The debate came following the release of the Acheson report that highlights the health
inequalities between the rich and the poor.
The report painted the clear picture that quite simply states that "the poor are
unhealthy". They have a shorter life expectancy, they suffer more from lung cancer,
coronary heart disease, strokes, suicide and violent accidents. Their homes are colder.
Trish Haines, Director of Social Services, said:
"We welcome the report that highlights much of what we know already. The
Warwickshire health initiative, is one way which we are trying to tackle these problems.
This is about working with our partners in the health service can successfully target
those in need and come up with a direct action plan."