Decision details

Better Care Fund - Planning for 2019/20

Decision Maker: Health and Wellbeing Board

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: No

Is subject to call in?: No


The Principal Officer, Planning and Quality Assurance (Adult Social Care, BCP Council) presented a report, a copy of which had been circulated and a copy of which appears as Appendix ‘B’ to these minutes in the Minute Book.

The report provided an update on progress in regards to implementing the Better Care Fund (BCF) Plan for 2019/20.  The report also set out the proposed governance route for ensuring delivery of the BCF so that it aligns to the Dorset Integrated Care System Governance arrangements. The aim is to use the 2019-20 plan to continue to help deliver ‘Our Dorset’ the Integrated Care System Plan.

Since 2013 the Better Care Fund (BCF) has been a programme spanning both the NHS and local government which seeks to join-up health and care services, so that people can manage their own health and wellbeing and live independently in their communities for as long as possible. The majority of the pooled resources for the Better Care Fund came from existing activity already within the health and social care system.  

The progress, resources and the five schemes of the plan were explained to the Board. Alongside the schemes it was also highlighted that Dorset CCG and BCP Council were focusing on additional areas of work which include continuing to develop strong sustainable care markets and an understanding of joint expenditure to better align NHS and Social Care budgets in the future.

It was explained that the BCF Plan for 2019/20 was a refresh of the 2017/19 Plan. The Joint Commissioning Board had oversight of implementation of the Plan. However the Health and Wellbeing Board has overall responsibility to sign off the plan and this needs to be completed before 27th September to meet the deadline for the national assurance process. The Plan would then go through NHS Improvement and NHS England as part of the national assurance process.

The BCF Plan was part of the wider transformation work already underway to align incentives and strategies. It was a representation of wider work on identifying vulnerable populations earlier, of collaborative working to provide a tailored and personalized response to improve outcomes for people and of an ambition to reduce or delay individuals’ needs for intensive services. 

It was explained that the responsibilities of the Board would include the ongoing monitoring of the plan, the budget and the performance metrics. Additional monitoring of the Plan would be undertaken by the Council and CCG officers monthly and through the Council and Cabinet quarterly. It was highlighted that there were challenges to the sustainability of funding for both the CCG and the Local Authority with the continued short-term funding arrangements being insufficient to cover the resource gap in the system.

It was also highlighted that the metrics and the targets associated with them were complex because they were set both nationally and locally and could be understood differently by different partners. It was therefore considered important to align and make transparent how the performance indicators were measured and monitored.

Board members felt the explanatory narrative around the metrics was important in order to understand underlying drivers and how they link to opportunities to reform the system. They also felt it was important to effectively monitor progress over time to see where progress was being made and where there were opportunities for improvement.


(a)  The Board agreed to review and sign off the BCF Plan at their next scheduled meeting

(b)  The Board agreed to receive monitoring reports on the delivery of the BCF plan at six monthly intervals


Publication date: 30/08/2019

Date of decision: 24/07/2019

Decided at meeting: 24/07/2019 - Health and Wellbeing Board

Accompanying Documents: