Are social landlords missing an opportunity in Health and Wellbeing?

Fascinating report just published by Metropolitan. I confess, it’s the connections between housing and health that really interest me. They’ve asked their tenants some interesting questions including which area's they felt there landlords should offer support, in which care & health came out top. The connections here with both health and council partners is not news to those of us working across these sectors. Social landlords are often perfectly placed to lead on the provision of this support. We’re moving to a world where budgets for care & health sit across the boundaries of the NHS and local government – but imagine a world where social landlords could be a part of that mix?

There are models of success in this kind of partnership working all over the UK but it’s still not the norm. We’ve seen first-hand in the work that we are doing at Kirklees Council around BetterOff; it has really benefited from the close working between the council and their local housing association, along with the myriad of third sector partners around delivering welfare advice and employment. 

This report has made me think more about the work that we have been doing on MyHealthTools, our on-line tool that supports long-term health conditions, and how we need to ensure that our housing partners are squarely part of that initiative. The outcomes of that project are based on very real reductions in people requiring access to GP’s and A&E. It’s time for housing to be part of that puzzle – they could well be the biggest advocates for this technology without us realising it.