Announcement of ground-breaking joint leadership role

A new approach to working together on social care, health commissioning and public health services across Cornwall is being put in place following a joint agreement between Cornwall Council and NHS Kernow Clinical Commissioning Group.

The new joint ‘Accountable Officer’ role will incorporate the duties currently undertaken by Cornwall Council’s  Strategic Director of Adult Care and Health and those of NHS Kernow’s Chief Officer to provide joined up leadership to deliver on the new vision for Health and Well-Being for the next 10 years, agreed by all the partners in January 2020  that “by working together to tackle health inequalities, everyone can enjoy good health and wellbeing and grow, live, work and age well”.

Cornwall has a ‘super-ageing’ population and as people live longer there will be an increased demand on health and social care services. The creation of a joint role builds on the already-close working between the two organisations, and has the potential to deliver far-reaching benefits to local people by providing joint oversight, leadership, and focus to allow public health and social care services to develop and deliver services to meet the needs and promote the wider health and wellbeing of people and communities.

Cornwall Council portfolio holder for adults, Cllr Rob Rotchell said: “This role is the next step in bringing together Cornwall’s public health, social care and health services to make sure that people in Cornwall are receiving a more seamless service between their care and health needs.

“When someone is in crisis it shouldn’t matter if their needs are due to their health or social care. By bringing these two important services together people should start to benefit from a much simpler and more integrated service.”

Dr Iain Chorlton, chair of NHS Kernow Clinical Commissioning Group said, “This is an important signal of our commitment to joint working. We recognise this will be a challenging role, and have taken several months to prepare the groundwork for such an important leadership position, which is a key step in how we work together to transform and develop services that meet the needs of our unique population.

“People expect us to work together to plan health and care, and this is a significant and positive step forward, which I believe will help us to improve the health of our population while delivering better value and impact for local taxpayers.”

It is our intention that the new role will be established and in place for the start of the new financial year on 1 April 2020. The appointment will be for an initial trial period of 18 months.