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Public Bodies (Joint Working) (Scotland) Act 2014

Integration schemes

Section 1 – Integration schemes: same local authority and Health Board area

5.Section 1 makes provision about integration schemes and sets out the four models of integration from which local authorities and Health Boards are to choose for the purposes of integration planning and integrated delivery of services in accordance with the Act.

6.Integration planning is predicated on the delegation of local authority and/or Health Board functions using one of the four models of delegation set out in subsection (4): (a) the local authority and the Health Board delegate functions to an integration joint board established as a body corporate by order by the Scottish Ministers; (b) the local authority delegates functions to the Health Board; (c) the Health Board delegates functions to a local authority, and (d) the local authority delegates functions to the Health Board and the Health Board delegates functions to the local authority.

7.By virtue of subsections (1) and (2), where the area of a local authority is the same as the area of a Health Board i.e. there is a single local authority within the Health Board area, the local authority and the Health Board are required to jointly prepare an integration scheme for the area of the local authority.

8.Subsection (3) sets out what the integration scheme must include. The required information is: (a) which model of integration is to be used; (b) the functions which are to be delegated in the way identified; (c) where functions are delegated to a Health Board, local authority or both, the functions of that body which are to be carried out in conjunction with the delegated functions, (the functions which may be set out in this part of the scheme are described in subsection (13)); (d) (where subsection (14) applies) a method of determining amounts to be made available by the Health Board for use by the person to whom the functions are delegated; (e) (where subsection (14) does not apply, or where it applies but the Health Board deems it not to apply) a method of determining payments which are to be made with respect to the delegated functions; and (f) information about additional matters or agreements that may be required by the Scottish Ministers by regulations.

9.Subsection (5) provides that local authorities may delegate only those of their functions that are conferred by the enactments listed in Part 1 of the schedule, or by virtue of an enactment listed in Part 2 of the schedule. Subsection (6) provides for Health Boards to delegate such of their functions as are prescribed by the Scottish Ministers. Subsection (7) provides that the Scottish Ministers may by regulations prescribe functions conferred by or by virtue of the enactments listed in the schedule that local authorities must delegate (where the integration model mentioned in subsection (4)(a) or (b) applies) in so far as those functions relate to persons aged 18 years or over. Subsection (8) provides for the Scottish Ministers to prescribe certain functions of a Health Board that must be delegated where the integration model mentioned in subsection (4)(a) or (c) applies and the functions relate to persons aged 18 years or over. Subsection (9) sets out the requirements which apply where the integration model provided for in subsection (4)(d), in which functions may be delegated to both the Health Board and local authority, is chosen. The provision sets out that either the local authority or the Health Board must delegate functions prescribed under subsections (7) or (8) respectively so far as the functions relate to persons aged 18 years or over. By virtue of subsection (10), the Scottish Ministers may prescribe functions of Health Boards that must be delegated other than in prescribed circumstances and prescribe functions of Health Boards that may not be delegated in prescribed circumstances. In addition, under subsection (11), the Scottish Ministers may prescribe functions listed in the schedule that may not be delegated by local authorities in prescribed circumstances. By virtue of subsection (12) the Scottish Ministers may remove enactments from the schedule.

10.Subsection (14) applies where Health Board functions which are to be delegated are carried out in a hospital which serves two or more local authority areas. Subsection (15) provides that regulations under subsection (3)(f) may include provisions: (a) conferring discretion on local authorities and Health Boards; (b) requiring local authorities and Health Boards to establish processes and procedures relating to prescribed matters; (c) imposing requirements on local authorities and Health Boards about the disclosure of information; and (d) on other matters relating to integration schemes as the Scottish Ministers think fit. Subsection (16), read with section 68(1)(Interpretation), defines what is meant by “Health Board” for the purposes of the Act. Its effect is that the provisions of the Act do not apply to Special Health Boards.

Section 2 - Integration schemes: two or more local authorities in Health Board area

11.Section 2 sets out requirements which apply where more than one local authority sits within the boundary of a single Health Board area (in contrast to the requirements in section 1(2) which apply where there is a single local authority in a Health Board area).

12.By virtue of subsection (2), each local authority and the Health Board are to agree which of the alternative duties in subsections (3) and (4) they will comply with in respect of the local authority area (compliance with one or the other is mandatory). The options are for a local authority to jointly prepare an integration scheme with that Health Board, for its own area only (subsection (3)), or for the local authority to join together with one or more other local authorities to jointly prepare, with the Health Board, an integration scheme for the areas of those local authorities (subsection (4)).The result is that within a single Health Board area, which consists of more than one local authority area, there may be any number of single local authority schemes and/or multiple local authority schemes. For example, in an area with 3 local authorities there may be a scheme for a single area plus a scheme covering the other two areas; or in an area with 6 local authorities there could be a scheme covering three areas, plus a scheme covering two areas, plus a scheme for a single area. The effect is to provide flexibility so that planning decisions can be taken on the basis of what is appropriate for the areas in question i.e. multiple local authorities within the area of the same Health Board can plan together where appropriate or they can choose to plan separately.

13.Subsection (5) sets out that where two or more local authorities and a Health Board decide that the integration model mentioned in section 1(4)(c) or (d) is to apply: (a) functions must be delegated to only one of the local authorities; (b) the integration scheme must set out which local authority the functions are to be delegated to (known as the “lead authority”); (c) functions are to be delegated by the Health Board and the local authority/local authorities to the lead authority; and (d) functions are to be delegated by local authorities to the Health Board and by the Health Board and the local authority/local authorities to the lead authority.

14.Subsection (6) sets out that when preparing an integration scheme, whether between an individual local authority and a Health Board, or multiple local authorities and a Health Board, a local authority and Health Board must (a) take into account any other integration scheme that has been prepared for the same Health Board area, and (b) the likely effect on the Health Board of any integration schemes prepared in relation to that Health Board. This provision establishes the importance of different integration schemes within a single Health Board area having regard to their combined effect, and interaction in relation, in particular, to the effective running of the Health Board.

Section 3 – Considerations in preparing integration scheme

15.Section 3 requires the local authority and Health Board to consider the integration planning principles and the national health and wellbeing outcomes when preparing an integration scheme. This provides a link with the national outcomes for health and wellbeing from the outset of the integration process, and underpins the purpose of integrating services.

Section 4 – Integration planning principles

16.Section 4 establishes the integration planning principles that must be taken into account when preparing an integration scheme.

17.The effect of subsection (1)(a) is to ensure that decisions about integration of functions take account of the principle that services, for the purposes of carrying out functions that must or may be delegated, are to improve the wellbeing of users of that service.

18.Subsection (1)(b) supplements this by setting out principles for delivery which must also be taken into account in taking decisions about how functions will be integrated. The effect is to ensure a focus on integrated delivery, including consideration of the needs of different service users and different areas, the particular characteristics and circumstances of different service users, the rights of service users, the dignity of service users, the participation by service users in the community in which they live, protecting and improving the safety of service users, improving the quality of services, local planning and leadership, the anticipation of needs and prevention of needs arising, and the effective use of resources.

Section 5 – Power to prescribe national outcomes

19.This section provides for the Scottish Ministers to set out in regulations national outcomes that relate to health and wellbeing. The national outcomes are to be taken into account throughout the process of integration planning and the operation of integrated services, to support the improvement of health and social care services. Before prescribing national outcomes, the Scottish Ministers are required to consult persons set out in subsections (2) and (3). The effect of the provision is to involve the groups identified in the development of the national outcomes on health and wellbeing.

Section 6 – Consultation

20.Section 6 sets out consultation requirements in relation to the preparation of integration schemes.

21.The local authority and Health Board, before submitting the integration scheme for approval, are required to consult (a) those persons or groups of person prescribed by the Scottish Ministers, by regulations, and (b) any other persons as the local authority and Health Board think fit. The consultation must be carried out jointly by the local authority and the Health Board. The local authority and Health Board are required to take account of views expressed as part of the consultation, when finalising the integration scheme.

Section 7 - Approval of integration scheme

22.This section requires a local authority and Health Board to jointly submit the integration scheme to the Scottish Ministers for approval, before a date that will be set by the Scottish Ministers in regulations.

23.Subsection (3) applies where a scheme is submitted but is not approved. It requires the Scottish Ministers to (a) provide the Health Board and the local authority with the reasons for the refusal to approve the scheme, (b) explain how the scheme should be modified and (c) set a date by which the modified scheme must be submitted for approval.

24.Subsection (4) makes provision for the approval of a modified integration scheme, and subsection (5) provides that, where the Scottish Ministers refuse to approve a modified scheme, the local authority and the Health Board will be treated as if they have failed to submit an integration scheme. The default powers of the Scottish Ministers in section 51 will then apply.

25.Subsection (6) gives the Scottish Ministers a discretionary power to grant an extension for submission of an integration scheme for approval. The Scottish Ministers may grant an extension on their own initiative or on the request of the local authority and the Health Board. Where the request comes from the local authority and the Health Board it must be made jointly and reasons for the request must be given. The effect is to enable a scheme to be accepted after the statutory deadline for submission, where there is good reason.

Section 8 – Publication of integration scheme

26.Section 8 requires the local authority and Health Board to publish the approved integration scheme, as soon as practicable after it has been approved.

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Text created by the Scottish Executive department responsible for the subject matter of the Act to explain what the Act sets out to achieve and to make the Act accessible to readers who are not legally qualified. Explanatory Notes were introduced in 1999 and accompany all Acts of the Scottish Parliament except those which result from Budget Bills

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