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LGA responds to care sector letter on adult social care

Responding to a letter from the Association of Directors of Adult Social Care, NHS Confederation, Care Provider Alliance and the Care and Support Alliance to the George Osborne, Jeremy Hunt and Greg Clarke calling for urgent talks with the Treasury and other Whitehall Departments on the crisis in adult social care in the care of older and disabled people,

Cllr Izzi Seccombe, the Local Government Association's Community Wellbeing spokesperson, said:

"In the Spending Review, the Government listened to our concerns about the urgent need to address our social care funding crisis by allowing councils with adult social care responsibilities to raise extra money through council tax to offset some of the pressures on social care.

"The additional funding for social care in the Better Care Fund, rising to £1.5 billion by 2019/20, announced in the Spending Review, was also good news. However, whilst this will go part of the way to helping the social care funding gap, we are concerned that there is no new Better Care Fund money next year, with very little money the following year, meaning that the full benefit will not be seen until the end of the decade, despite care for the elderly and vulnerable being at breaking point now.

"Councils, the NHS, care providers and the voluntary sector are united in calling for full funding for adult social care as this is vital to protecting care services and easing pressure on the NHS. If social care remains inadequately funded, the support which helps to keep people out of hospital and in their own homes will suffer, heaping more pressure on our already overburdened NHS

"The current reality of increasing demand, rising costs and continued funding pressures mean that elderly and vulnerable people face an uncertain future where the availability of dignified care and support they need to help them regain independence, such as help getting dressed or getting out and about, is at risk. We are now also on the fast-track towards a care home collapse, leaving our elderly friends and family in care limbo, not knowing where they will go if a care home closes.

"It cannot be solely left to local council taxpayers to fix our chronically underfunded social care system.  If proper funding for social care is not urgently addressed, essential services will remain increasingly at risk and the full needs of older and disabled people and their carers who require vital care and support will not be met."

NOTES

  • The Local Government Finance Settlement will set out the details of funding arrangements and how this funding will be distributed.
  • A survey by NHS Confederation showed that 99 per cent of senior NHS managers/directors believe that cuts to adult social care are is putting extra pressure on the health service

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