Dear colleagues, 

In this week’s update:

  • Better Care Fund planning guidance 2016/17 now live
    • Deadline reminder: Q3 reporting returns due 26 February
    • Regional sharing and learning events
    • Insight visit report : South Gloucestershire
    • Data sharing training
    • Save the date – forthcoming conferences in February and March

    Better Care Fund planning guidance 2016/17

    The Better Care Fund planning guidance 2016/7 has now been published at: Full version also attached here.

    The Better Care Fund planning return template has now been published (24.02.2016) on the NHS England website here:

    We will be running a webinar on Friday to provide guidance on completing the template and an opportunity to ask questions. The details are below, along with the link for registering to join. This will be recorded and circulated after it finishes.

    BCF Planning 2016-17: Completing the planning return template

    Friday, February 26, 2016

    2:00 pm - GMT Time (London, GMT) - 1 hr 30 mins - Register

    After your request has been approved, you'll receive instructions for joining the meeting. 

    Can't register? Contact support

    The deadlines for returns for local Better Care Fund plans are:

    2 March:          Local areas to submit a first draft of the BCF planning return template only to national DCO teams, copied to the Better Care Support Team, detailing the technical elements of the planning requirements, including funding contributions, a scheme level spending plan, national metric plans, and any local risk sharing agreement.

    21 March:       First submission of full narrative plans for Better Care alongside a second submission of the BCF planning return template.

    25 April:          Final submission, once formally signed off by the Health and Wellbeing Board.


    Deadline reminder - Q3 data due back by 26 February 2016 

    A quick reminder that the Q3 data deadline is fast approaching – the deadline is 26 February. Updated FAQs are attached.

    Please read the guidance tab before completion and direct any queries to as usual.


    Regional Learning and Sharing events – still places left for Reading and Taunton

    This week we’ve continued the delivery of our regional learning and sharing events, with a very well subscribed event in London.

    These continue to be really interesting events, with some inspiring and thought provoking presentations from local areas. A key theme from all these events has been that there are lots of people and teams across the country dealing with similar challenges and hurdles, so networking and cross-pollination of ideas is really important.

    The presentations from the events will all be shared on the PCC website and the Better Care Exchange – we’ll circulate links soon.

    The last two events in this series will take place in Reading (25 February) and Wellington / Taunton (2 March). You can sign up for them using the links below:

    Thursday 25 February 2016, Reading

    Wednesday 2 March 2016, Wellington /Taunton


    Insight visit report: South Gloucestershire

    Our Insight Visits programme is an opportunity for the national team to understand what local areas are doing well with regards to integrated care, and what national and regional support would be helpful to address their challenges. We recently visited South Gloucestershire to talk about how hear work was progressing to join up primary care work via GP clusters.

    South Gloucestershire is relatively new to health and social care integration – their multidisciplinary team (MDT) model begin in late 2014 – and they have been using their BCF fund to set up new GP clusters. They have partnered with Sirona health and care , a community interest company delivering community health services in the region that is involved in a number of regional integration initiatives. South Gloucestershire is also linked into regional data sharing initiatives, working with other local partners through the Connecting Care programme.

    We were particularly interested to hear about the work being done by South Gloucestershire around dementia, including both urgent response and a screening and assessment pathways,  because of its focus on two national priorities - dementia and primary care.  Overall we found an area with a very clear vision for what they wanted to achieve, with strong leadership and an effective governance model.


    Don’t miss out on data sharing training

    If you haven’t booked your place on our data sharing workshop yet, there are still a few spaces left at the events we are running with North of England Commissioning Support (NECS)  taking place in Leeds on 24th February, in Birmingham on 26th February. Unfortunately the London session is fully booked, although we may run a second if demand is high enough.

    To book a place for Leeds or Birmingham, see:


    Save the date – forthcoming health and social care conferences in February and March

    In periods of fast and constant change, it can be particularly beneficial to network with colleagues in the wider sector who are experiencing similar issues and problems to ourselves. It also helps us gain a wider perspective on possible solutions as well as updates from experts on latest ideas and developments. With this in mind, we have collated an events list covering the next couple of months – one at which I am speaking.  Please see full details below:

    Date:                                     23 February 2013

    Title:                                      The Future of Health & Well Being Boards

    Venue:                                Etc. Venues, One Drummond Gate, Victoria, London, SW1V 2QQ

    Summary:                           This event sets out to explore the future of HWBs and how Boards can overcome the challenges they face against a backdrop of integration, devolution and growing local needs.

    Cost per place:                  £225.00

    Organiser:                           Westminster Briefing

    Further details:       


    Date:                                     07 March 2016

    Title:                                      The Value of Engaging People in Service Change

    Venue:                                 Birmingham

    Summary:                           Facilitated by Debbie Sorkin of The Leadership Centre, this event will bring together local and national Healthwatch, commissioners and providers from around the country, and stakeholders from service change programmes.

    Organiser:                           Healthwatch

    Cost per place:                  Free

    Further details:       

    Note:                                    BCF’s Better Care Support Team Programme Director, Anthony Healy, is speaking on the BCF and lessons learned from the first year of implementation at this event.


    Date:                                   10 March 2016

    Title:                                    Integration: how the workforce is making it happen

    Venue:                                Birmingham

    Summary:                         The conference will explore how to make integration a reality using their experience of social care leadership and workforce development. The conference will showcase the latest models and lessons being learnt, and emphasise the importance of a joined-up approach to organising care around the needs of people in our communities.

    Organiser:                         Skills For Care

    Cost per place:                 £245 plus vat

    Further details:      

    Note:                                 Alastair Burt, Minister of State for Community and Social Care,  is confirmed as a speaker


    Date:                                 21 March 2016

    Title:                                  Multi-Agency Information Sharing Conference

    Venue:                              Central London

    Summary:                        Bringing together best practice from local authorities, health, fire and rescue

    and the Information Commissioner’s Office, this event addresses the key barriers to effective information sharing protocols and provides guidance on building strong, simple and secure data sharing systems.

    Cost per place:                  £359.00

    Further details:       


    Date:                                     23 March 2016

    Title:                                 Local Area Co-ordination

    Venue:                             Central London

    Summary:                         This conference focuses on how investment in Local Area Coordination can help local authorities, social care, health services and community based care and support services to meet the challenges of delivering the Care Act and other reform agendas, in an a resource restricted environment.

    Organiser:                           Capita Conferences

    Cost per place   :               £359.00

    Further details:       

    Local Area Coordination is a long term, integrated, evidence based approach to

    supporting people with disabilities, mental health needs, older people and their

    families/carers. See:

    Anthony Kealy   

    Anthony Kealy

    Better Care Support Team Programme Director