§ 91. Mr. Colin Shepherd
To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services if he has any plans to review his policy of care in the community in respect of the mentally handicapped;: and if he will make a statement.
§ Mrs. Currie
The policy is well established. The scope for improving progress in its implementation will be considered in the light of Sir Roy Griffiths' review of the way in which public funds are used to support community care policy and options that would improve the use of these funds as a contribution to more effective community care.
§ 110. Mr. Ernie Ross
To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services whether he is satisfied with the progress towards joint strategies by health authorities and local authorities for community care services for the mentally ill and mentally handicapped.
§ Mrs. Currie
Although policy on care in the community is well established, community care services for mentally ill and mentally handicapped people in England are still in the process of development, and more needs to be done to develop joint strategies, and ensure co-ordination between the statutory, voluntary and private sectors which collectively provide the services. Successive Governments have recognised that it will take a good deal of effort and hard work over a long period to produce the kind of service we want. The challenge of providing well co-ordinated community-oriented modern services has been patchily met by some health and local authorities: very good services are being developed elsewhere.
Sir Roy Griffiths is currently reviewing the way public funds are used to support community care policy, including the contribution of joint strategies by health authorities and local authorities. We will decide about action to take once we receive his recommendations.