Integrated Health and Social Care

The Scottish Government has a powerful vision for an integrated Health and Social care system.

In 2016 the Scottish Government legislated to bring together health and social care in to a single, integrated system, with Integration Authorities now responsible for £8.5 billion of funding for local services, which was previously managed separately by NHS Boards and Local Authorities.

A collaboration of the organizations involved describe how this is intended to realize a new vision for social services in Scotland, with additional reviews from Audit Scotland providing this detailed briefing and this one from SPICe. 'Digital Stories' are videos offered to explain these new programs.

The team runs their own web site, blog and Twitter account.

Personalized Healthcare

As they describe for the 2017 - 2022 Strategy: Person-centred health and social care is at the heart of our strategic agenda in Scotland. We are developing a new, integrated Digital Health and Social Care Strategy that will build on achievements to date and set out future development and priorities.

Ecosystem Service Design

An essential dynamic is that integrated services require a collaborative network of multiple partners. There are specific organizations intended to form these ecosystems, such as for the Highlands and Islands.

Writing for The Scotsman Susan Lowes of Marie Curie describes the challenges of achieving an integrated system, and the many different organizations involved highlights the complex nature of this ecosystem-based service delivery.

For example Age Scotland provides services to care for alone elderly, and the East Ayrshire ADP - a multi agency partnership supports recovery from drug and alcohol problems. In this white paper CELCIS discusses the impact upon Children's Services.

In Aberdeen HSC runs sessions to explain the impact upon GP appointments, and in Dundee related capacity upgrades include the £250k transformation of the Lochee Health Centre. The Scottish Services Council is working in partnership with NHS Education for Scotland (NES) to deliver the Workforce for Integration Project.

The Alliance

The Health and Social Care Alliance Scotland (the ALLIANCE) is a key organization providing an umbrella for this large body of different organizations involved in social care service delivery, with over 2,500 members including large, national support providers as well as small, local volunteer-led groups.

They published a detailed stakeholder report, to summarize the many different perspectives of service providers and the needs they represent, identifying key issues such as the welfare of social staff, including the fact many are themselves living in poverty.

They ran a collaborative event where almost 100 delegates discussed how the third sector can help achieve the ambitions in Scotland’s new Digital health and care strategy, and shared the findings here, and published their 2018-2020 work plan here.

Knowledge ecosystem for Integrated Health and Social Care in Scotland, featuring @ALLIANCEScot, @DigiCare4Scot : Click to Tweet

Integration Authorities

For example within Glasgow City, Glasgow City Council and NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde have integrated the planning and delivery of all community health and social care services, including services for children, adults, older people, along with homelessness and criminal justice services.

This work is led and directed by the Glasgow City Integration Joint Board, with the Council and Health Board delivering services under the banner of the ‘Glasgow City Health and Social Care Partnership.’

Their Strategic Plan is documented here. Aberdeen City is seeking input on their plan.

Integration Support Team

The Integration Support team provide support to the third sector and HSCPs in Scotland around Health and Social Care Integration


A flagship policy program is 'GIRFEC' - Getting It Right For Every Child'.

Devolved Social Security

A flagship policy program is the devolution of some Social Security functions to the Scottish Parliament. The IT strategy details their main plans for achieving this new implementation.

Read more in this blog.