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ellbeing Vision Aims to Narrow the Health Gaps in Reading

Council press release:

———- Forwarded message ———-
From: “Reading Borough Council” <>
Date: 19 Jan 2016 10:18
Subject: Wellbeing Vision Aims to Narrow the Health Gaps in Reading
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Wellbeing Vision Aims to Narrow the Health Gaps in Reading

Reading Borough Council Press Release

A REPORT going before the Reading Health and Wellbeing Board on 22nd January sets out the council’s approach to promoting physical, mental and social wellbeing for adults with care needs.

Reading’s local approach to reducing adults’ need for care and support is set out in the form of a draft Adult Wellbeing Position Statement. This outlines how the council is responding to its Care Act duties and working to narrow the wellbeing gaps in the borough.

The statement presents the council’s aim to enable people to reduce the risk of developing avoidable disease, stop the deterioration of individual wellbeing, and delay the need for intensive support for as long is safe and appropriate.

The position statement advocates a holistic approach and demonstrates how a wide range of council services already help to promote adult wellbeing for those with care needs in Reading – from home safety checks, through to healthy walks programmes, winter fuel assistance, reminiscence boxes, services to reduce loneliness and an approach to end of life care with personal dignity at its heart.

In order to realise its vision for adult wellbeing, the council’s proposed key aims are to:

  • Embed the wellbeing principle throughout the council.
  • Ensure Reading homes support wellbeing.
  • Harness the assets Reading has to prevent care and support needs from increasing.
  • Empower people with care needs to self-care and to make positive lifestyle choices.
  • Support people to prevent their care and support needs from increasing.
  • Promote a reabling approach across care services.
  • Ensure people with emerging care needs and unpaid carers can access services that work well together to support people’s independence.

As part of the council’s commitment to working with residents, the report recommends launching an eight week public consultation on this approach. The council will use the results to refresh the Reading Health and Wellbeing Strategy and to shape its work with other health and care partners, to ensure that the services that help people to lead healthy and long lives are working as effectively as possible.

Cllr Graeme Hoskin, lead member for health, said:

“At its heart, this position statement advocates a practice that highlights reablement, recovery and rehabilitation and reduces dependency. The challenge of reduced council budgets alongside population growth means it is vital we target our approaches ever more effectively.

“It is also important for the council to know people's views on health and wellbeing and to incorporate this into the vision.”

Cllr Rachel Eden, lead member for adult social care, said:

“In the face of mounting budget pressures, coupled with increased service demands, we need to ensure our investment is directed at improving the wellbeing of Reading residents – that is, helping people to prevent avoidable ill-health and disability – rather than just treating the effects of poor wellbeing.

“We are committed to working closely with our residents, as well as joint working with partners across health, social care, housing and other community services, in developing this framework. Our priority is to ultimately narrow the gaps in wellbeing so that Reading residents affected by care and support needs can access early help and enjoy healthy and fulfilling lives.”

The full report and strategy can be viewed here:


Notes for Editors:

The draft Wellbeing Position Statement is an interim document that builds on and complements several existing strategies, particularly:

  • Reading Health and Wellbeing Strategy 2013-16
  • Reading Borough Council Plan for Adult Social Care 2014
  • Reading Borough Council Corporate Plan 2015-18

The Wellbeing Position Statement does not set out to replace these. Rather, it is intended to promote a more cohesive approach to wellbeing across the local authority by bringing existing strands of activity together and identifying priorities to ensure the council is as effective as it can be.

The Position Statement will be accompanied by an implementation plan for 2016-17, which will be refreshed in subsequent years and incorporated into a broader Health and Wellbeing Action Plan.

The Care Act requires councils to have a well-being strategy. The ‘position statement’ that the council has prepared is intended to cover this responsibility whilst an updated version of the health and well-being strategy for 2016-2019 which will be based on the revised JSNA (due to presented to the Health & Well-being Board in March) is prepared. The council’s Care Act ‘well-being principle’ responsibilities will be incorporated in this new health and well-being strategy.

The revised JSNA will emphasise the importance of prevention, that is, reducing the risk of avoidable disease and disability, and thus will provide a good basis for a comprehensive, Care Act-compliant, health and well-being strategy.

Reading Borough Council Press Releases can be found online at

Media Contact: Victoria Buckett
Tel: 0118 937 3957

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