The consultation will inform the drafting of a Bill to bring in a National Care Service. The Bill is expected to be introduced to Parliament in the summer of 2022 and the National Care Service is expected to be fully functioning by the end of the Parliamentary term in 2026.
The headline proposals from Scottish Government are:
- Create a National Care Service to cover not only adult social care but also “create a comprehensive community health and social care service that supports people of all ages
- Create Community Health and Social Care Boards, taking on the functions of Integration Joint Boards, but now accountable to the National Care Service. This means that the NHS would no longer be responsible for community health care, and local authorities would no longer be responsible for social care.
- The Scottish Government do not envisage change to employment status for people in the NHS.
- The consultation suggests that the National Care Service will be responsible for national workforce planning and development, though does not propose how that function will work with employers, including the NHS.
- The creation of a ‘National Care Record’ is proposed to bring together the health and social care information that different providers hold about an individual.
- The consultation rejects the recommendation of the Independent Review of Adult Social Care that the National Care Service should also be the regulator of care services, stating that the independence of the regulation role is important.