The Scottish government has announced the UK’s first integrated health and social care workforce plan.
Created in partnership with COSLA (the Convention of Scottish Local Authorities), the plan sets out how health and social care services will meet growing demand and ensure there are enough staff with the right skills across both services.
Health Secretary Jeane Freeman said: “This is the UK’s first integrated health and social care workforce plan and it will be invaluable in helping us to anticipate and respond to the changing and growing demand faced by our health and social care services.
“We have record numbers working across our health and social care services – with NHS staffing levels up 11.3% since 2006 and the social care workforce at its highest level since reports began. As this plan outlines, the threat of a ‘no deal’ Brexit remains, and as a responsible government we will continue to do all we can to protect our health and social care services.”
Key commitments include:
shifting the balance of care into community settings by delivering more care at home and reducing admission to acute hospital services;
providing informal and formal skills development for workforce planners across health and social care employers;
designing and overseeing work to obtain a national picture of workforce planning capacity, methodology and capability in local authorities/health and social care partnerships for planning social care services;
working with the Scottish University and college sectors to examine, develop and build a workforce planning educational qualification for the health and social care workforce; and
providing additional support in 2019/21 to the third and independent social care sectors to enable their contributions to the developments in workforce planning.
COSLA Health and Social Care Spokesperson Councillor Stuart Currie added: “COSLA is pleased to support the publication of Scotland’s first integrated health and social care workforce plan. Workforce planning is essential to ensure that Scotland’s people receive the right care, by the right people, at the right time and in the right place.
“We look forward to continued cross-sectoral work, to realise this plan’s ambition and to further develop capacity and capability for workforce planning in social care and beyond, for the benefit of our citizens’ health and wellbeing.”