New policy paper, written by Vidhya Alakeson, arguing that
individual budgets can create a more patient-centred and integrated
health and social care system.
This paper was published as part of a series from the Centre for
Welfare Reform and Birmingham University Health Services Management
Centre and builds on work from a two-day think-tank on innovation
in health and social care.
It proposes the development of
self-direction in healthcare, arguing that it will improve health
outcomes, prevent individuals becoming dependent on specialist
services and make the NHS more efficient.
The paper argues that the current health service focuses on
services rather than outcomes and prioritises professional
expertise over the experience of individuals. Alakeson makes the
case that in many areas of healthcare where there is more than one
possible treatment, individuals and families want to be supported
to be active partners with professionals in decisions about their
According to the paper, making individual budgets work
will depend on a shift in thinking in three areas:
1. A shift in the balance of power between
professionals and patients in favour of patients.
2. A shift from a system defined by the services it
delivers to the health outcomes it secures.
3. A shift towards a whole person approach with one
integrated budget per person covering all health and social
For more information and to download the full report please
visit the Centre for