Integration of services – or – delivery of integrated services?

One of the responsibilities I have – in fact which I volunteered for – is to co-ordinate the East Lothian Integrated Children’s Services Plan.

Now that the schools are off I can turn my mind to this although we’ve been involved in preliminary work for the last couple of months. One of our goals is to try to reduce workload for people whilst enhancing the impact we have – more for less- is it possible?

At a really god meeting today we agreed that our goal is not the integration of services but the delivery of integrated services. Our emerging aim for Integrated Children’s Services reads:

To ensure that services for children and young people are delivered in a well-integrated, seamless manner, which result in positive outcomes for children and young people.

Our outline plan shows how we would like to link up our Community Plan, with our Integrated Children’s Services Plan by making use of themes which we will address through inter-agency teams and in our particular services. It’s this latter element which is different – by recognising that single services – such as education – will contribute to themes in some of their day-to day practice as opposed to always having to set up yet another inter-agency group.