A NEW partnership is being piloted to integrate health and care services in parts of a borough.

Ribble Valley Council has joined forces with the health, housing and charity sectors, and GPs, to form the Ribblesdale Community Partnership, which aims to integrate health and care services in the Ribblesdale locality, comprising Clitheroe, Whalley, Sabden and Slaidburn.

The new partnership has drawn up an action plan outlining several priorities around joined-up working, children and young people, mental health and self-care.

The number of people aged over 85 in the UK has increased by a third in the last decade and is expected to double over the next, and Ribble Valley has an above average number of older residents – three per cent, as opposed to the UK average of 2.2.

The group meets monthly to improve the health of residents and access to health services, particularly by the young and isolated.

Cllr Bridget Hilton, who chairs the committee, said: “The partnership is the first step in the integration of health and social care, and we believe it can achieve a great deal to improve the health of Ribble Valley residents.

“We have been surveying residents to find out about their health needs and experiences of the health service, and their views are being analysed and considered.”