The Royal College of Midwives has given its support to the findings of the recently published independent commission report on integration of health and social care.
Last year, Labour invited Sir John Oldham to form the Independent Commission on Whole-Person Care, which was asked to make recommendations about how health and care services in England could be integrated, within existing resources, and without another reorganisation.
His findings have now been published in One Person, One Team, One System, which can be read in full at: www.yourbritain.org.uk/uploads/editor/files/One_Person_One_Team_One_System.pdf
Commenting on the report Jon Skewes, director for policy, employment relations and communications at the Royal College of Midwives, said: "The RCM has long championed the need for more effective and joined-up care between health and social care. Midwives and maternity services are often the first point of contact for vulnerable women with social problems such as domestic abuse and drug dependency, so are ideally placed to ensure the kind of joined up care this reports aims for.
"We welcome the report and look forward to contributing to and working towards its recommendations."
The report’s recommendations emphasise the need for any new system of integration to allow for local flexibility, with different models built around local need and preference; with a lead role for health and wellbeing boards; and with all of the approach built on the achievement of patient/user outcomes, rather than service targets.
Other more detailed recommendations include that there should be a single identifiable person to act as care coordinator for people with complex needs; that multi-professional working should become the norm; and that individual health and social care records should belong to the person concerned.