The Public Bodies (Joint Working) (Scotland) Act 2014 set the framework for the integration of adult health and social care services. Teams, organisations and sectors are now required to work in partnership and interdependently to deliver shared outcomes for the people they serve. The purpose of this paper is to explore any features, practices and behaviours that could influence effective partnership working across sectors.
A questionnaire was designed and distributed to a range of stakeholders working in health, social care and the third sector. With reference to the changing health and social care reform agenda, the aims of the survey were to gather views, experiences and perceptions of working across sectors, and any workforce development needs.
The majority of respondents were from the NHS (80.3 per cent, 118/147), and experiences were largely drawn from those working with the third sector. The utility of working with the third sector was positively highlighted; however, there were limited opportunities to fully engage. Whilst formal education and training was welcomed, workforce development needs were mostly related to fostering relationships and building mutual trust.
This paper highlights views, perceptions, enablers and barriers to integrated care in Scotland. Whilst the Scottish integration landscape is currently not fully fledged, insights into prevailing attitudes towards integrated care, by a cohort of the Scottish health and care workforce, are offered. In particular, reflections by the NHS workforce to working with third sector services are discussed.
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