How Healthier Wales joint working can help with Housing, Health and Social Care

There are many benefits for individuals and families from joint working between housing and health and social care organisations. This is something that one of our Associates Ceri Breeze has been exploring recently in a study for the Association of Directors of Social Services (ADSS) Cymru. The work highlights examples from across Wales. Ceri identifies six ways that NHS and social care can harness the benefits of joint working with social housing organisations:

  1. Using local housing providers to reduce the need for, and cost, of, out-of-area placements
  1. Preventing delayed transfers of care (and as far as possible, the possibility of readmission) by addressing housing or housing-related issues
  1. Using housing providers to identify opportunities to provide earlier intervention and more support, and options for primary care to address health and non-health issues which affect people’s health and well-being
  1. Alternative use of existing local housing assets to better meet the needs (sometimes complex needs) of people who are receiving services and support from the NHS and/or social care
  1. Improving the lifelong prospects of care leavers by using local housing provision to help equip them with the skills necessary for successful independent living
  1. Improving the way in which services and support are delivered by involving housing providers (social landlords and/or housing-related support providers) in service delivery (i.e. towards more of a ‘whole system’ approach)

Over and above examples of joint working, the study also identified a variety of actions by social landlords which help improve people’s health and well-being. With so much good work happening across Wales, it is exciting to see organisations working together for a Healthier Wales. But to realise its full potential, joint working and good practice must be expanded and spread to all parts of Wales.

Ceri is a former Welsh Government senior civil servant. You can read his full article on the study in Welsh Housing Quarterly here:https://www.whq.org.uk/the-magazine/issue/115/helping-health-and-social-care-improve-outcomes/

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