Health boards should cover children’s services, says Ennals

Department of Health (DoH) proposals to introduce local health and wellbeing boards should be adapted to include children’s services, according to the chief executive of the National Children’s Bureau (NCB).

As part of a submission to the DoH, Sir Paul Ennals claimed the plans are an opportunity to vastly develop partnership working.

Current proposals will see local authorities and health commissioners work together to organise local health and wellbeing provision through statutory boards.

But Ennals argued that these boards should become part of the solution to the problem that “children’s health has often been an afterthought for the NHS”.

“If they are made responsible for overseeing a local commissioning strategy for all children’s health, social care and education, they could ensure that the work of the local authority, the GP commissioning boards and the national NHS Commissioning Board all work together more effectively for children and families across the country,” he explained.

“We could at last see a truly joined-up approach to delivering services between health and local authorities, which the current structure of children’s trusts has only partly delivered.”