§ Mr. Wigley
asked the Secretary of State for Wales, where in Wales there now exists a formal joint team between district health authorities and county social service departments, in relation to the development of services for mentally ill people; and if he is satisfied with the rate of progress in this area.
§ Mr. Wyn Roberts
All health authorities, local authorities and family practitioner committees are required by statute to form joint consultative committees, which include representation of voluntary sector interests. The arrangements below the level of JCCs for ensuring effective joint working are for authorities locally to decide.
Much remains to be done to achieve the decentralised patterns of mental illness services which are our objective. None the less, we are taking steps to ensure the coordinated development of services. These include monitoring health authorities' strategic plans; the requirement placed on health authorities to reinvest the proceeds of the first 0.5 per cent. of efficiency savings on developments in continuing care services for mentally ill, mentally handicapped and elderly people; special funding of mental illness developments in the NHS in 1985–86 of almost £1 million; and Welsh Office contributions to jointly financed developments in social services of over £2 million in 1985–86.
We have arranged for a further independent review of mental illness services jointly by the NHS health advisory service and the social work service of the Welsh Office between 1985–86 and 1987, the reports of which will be published.