More joint working at strategic planning, service commissioning and service provision level closely monitored through either the Commission for Health Improvement, the Social Services Inspectorate or the Audit Commission, with joint national priorities and national performance frameworks.

A new duty of partnership over health implementation programmes, with local authority chief executives participating in health authority meetings.

New guidance on the existing powers to transfer money to social services under S28A of the 1977 NHS Act (introduced to develop community services after the closure of long term hospitals), extending it to include primary care trusts. New laws allowing a reciprocal

arrangement from social services departments.

Legislation allowing budgets to be pooled.

Existing joint finance money - currently 155m a year - to be incorporated into the new unified budgets. Benchmark figures for health and social service contributions.

One agency able to take the lead for commissioning a service.

New legislation allowing the NHS to provide some social care services, while social services could provide some traditionally health-based services, such as chiropody.

Additional 'incentive' money from the comprehensive spending review to encourage joint working initiatives.