An underused local government power could help social services and
councils streamline and develop care services.
The well-being power lets councils implement new ways of working
even if they do not conform to legislation. It was brought in under
section two of the Local Government Act 2000 but take-up has been
slow, partly due to lack of understanding.
Hilary Kitchin, of the Local Government Information Unit, told a
Local Government Association conference in London last week that it
could be used to pool funds between neighbouring councils to
develop projects that would benefit entire regions, such as
The Isle of Wight is looking at using well-being powers to merge
primary care trust, hospital trust and social services functions to
create a single body for all health and social care services.