Health secretary Andy Burnham has called for health and social care to be more equal partners - and not be “precious” about budgets.

His five-year strategy for the NHS, published today, said the NHS must work “more effectively” with local partners.

It said: “The NHS and adult social care services working together to support people in the community will in turn lead to a reduction in emergency admissions for older people and people with long term conditions.”

Earlier this week, HSJ revealed his plans for the NHS to be given far greater responsibility for social care.

At a briefing at the launch of the document, Mr Burnham said the NHS strategy and the social care white paper, due early next year, “must be seen together”.

“I’m clear that we need to make health and social care more equal partners,” he said.

Today Mr Burnham highlighted NHS-funded “reablement” services as an example. “That money you might say is money that traditionally councils might have spent - well let’s not be precious about it.”


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