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Kirklees Council is joining forces with NHS Kirklees Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) to support the independent care sector in Kirklees.

A £119,000 investment in the Kirklees Care Association will support the care home market. The association will provide the independent care sector with a single, strong voice in the market, enabling better working relations with the council, CCG and Kirklees Integrated Care System (ICS).

Additionally, the money will be used to form a business structure for the Kirklees Care Association and to support two years of operating costs.

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James Creegan, Chair of the Kirklees Care Association said: “The Kirklees Care Association started as a group of care providers collaborating on issues that faced us all and we have worked tirelessly during the pandemic to ensure that the voice of the independent social care sector was heard and listened to.

“The investment being made will allow us to take our development to the next level and expand support and partnership working opportunities across a much broader range of providers.

“The funding also acknowledges the fact the council and CCG see the value of having a strategic partner representing the provider sector, and that developments and improvements can only be made “with” and not “to” the care sector. Together we will work to ensure that the most vulnerable people in our community of Kirklees continue to receive the highest quality care and support possible.”

A strong Kirklees Care Association will provide opportunities to work differently and will support and encourage care quality development and management across the sector. This includes developing partnerships, sector-wide digital innovations and system support as well as improving joint working on staff recruitment, retention, training and development.

Councillor Musarrat Khan, Cabinet Member for Health and Social Care, said: “I am delighted that we are supporting social care providers in the independent sector. The COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact across Kirklees, and we know that longer term national reform is needed to sustain the care sector.

“By acting now, we are trying to prevent further damage to an already fragile independent market in the borough.  We need to support our local providers so that they can continue to provide good quality care for some of our most vulnerable residents in Kirklees.”

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