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Health and Social Care Board set to close

We're Closing sign hanging on the words 'Health and Social Care Board'

The Health and Social Care Board (HSCB) will officially close on 31 March 2022, with responsibility for its functions transferring to the Department of Health.

HSCB staff will undertake their functions from 1 April 2022 as part of the Department’s newly formed Strategic Planning and Performance Group (SPPG).

This approach will streamline structures and reduce bureaucracy whilst providing continuity of service.

“I am confident that our staff will continue to work in partnership with Department of Health, HSC colleagues and key partners and rise to the many challenges that lie ahead,” said HSCB Chief Executive, Sharon Gallagher.

“With the establishment of the Strategic Planning and Performance Group, I look forward to working with colleagues across health and social care to strengthen accountability and authority within the HSC system.”

The closure of the Board is part of a wider transformation which will consider how future HSC services will be planned and managed differently.

Work has already commenced on the development of a new Integrated Care System (ICS) for Northern Ireland which signals a new way of planning and managing our health and social care services based on the specific needs of the population.

Outgoing HSCB Chairman Les Drew said: “I extend my very best wishes for the future to everyone at the Board as they progress into the Strategic Planning and Performance Group in the Department of Health.

“With optimism I welcome the establishment of this new model which brings an end to uncertainty and lays the cornerstone for the reform of commissioning and the delivery of effective, modern health and social care services that the people of Northern Ireland rightly deserve.”

The decision to close the HSCB in November 2015 was about recognition of a system that was complex and in which the commissioning process did not meet the needs of the population and with a recognised need to move to one based on collaboration.

Working for the SPPG, staff will see no change to their existing HSC Terms and Conditions.