Agencies get your views on reforms

PUBLISHED: 16:47 28 October 2008 | UPDATED: 22:33 15 June 2010

PERSONALISING adult social care and bringing NHS and local authority services closer together was up for debate in Honiton last week.

PERSONALISING adult social care and bringing NHS and local authority services closer together was up for debate in Honiton last week.The newly appointed Joint Agency Health and Social Care Cluster Manager for Honiton and Ottery St Mary gave older residents a chance to comment on an important draft policy document.Geraldine Benson, in a PowerPoint presentation, given in the Mackarness Hall, outlined the recommendations of a joint health and well-being strategy, Ageing Well in Devon, put together by Devon Primary Care Trust and Devon County Council.Opening the meeting former mayor Councillor Vernon Whitlock, chairman of Honiton Senior Council, which hosted the event, said: "It is all about us actually saying what we would like."If there are things you don't like, it's an opportunity to say so as well."The meeting attracted a better than expected turnout, with most seats being taken, and a largely positive response. But residents were confronted with the nitty-gritty of policy detail - not information about individual service provision.Ms Benson explained how social services and health care providers are working together to improve services.She was keen to hear any suggestions local residents may have - both on how services can be improved and how some funding can be realised.The emphasis, she said, was on personalising care and how a Department of Health policy document, An Introduction to the Personalisation Toolkit, could be achieved with the funds available.The key aims of recommendations include providing more care at home, offering telecare and telemedicine, looking at new patterns of housing and how to tackle dependency on residential and nursing care."I want to support the senior council in facilitating these discussions and dialogue," said Ms Benson. "I intend to keep that dialogue open."We need to target resources in the most appropriate places.


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