Hancock’s social care funding boost ‘only a partial fix’

2 Oct 18

The health secretary’s promise of £240m extra to help keep older people out of hospitals this winter has been called a “partial fix” by council and social care leaders.

Matt Hancock announced the package, which will go to local authority social care teams, at the Conservative Party Conference in Birmingham this afternoon.

But Glen Garrod, president of the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services, said: “This funding can only be a temporary and partial ‘fix’ - we need to go much further, much faster, if we are to truly support people in the community.

“This can only be achieved with greater co-ordination between health, social care and housing services and through a long-term settlement for adult social care.”

Although, he added this cash will help relieve pressure on A&E departments and was an acknowledgement of the important role care workers have in ensuring people are discharged safely and without delays from hospital.

David Williams, County Councils Network spokesman for health and social care and leader of Hertfordshire County Council, said the announcement “perpetuates a trend of short-termism we have seen from successive governments when it comes to adult social care”.

He added: “With the 36 county authorities in the CCN membership facing a funding black hole of £1.4bn next year, further injections of funding for all services will be required for the next financial year in excess of what councils will receive from today’s announcement.”

He said this "desperately needed resource” for social care ahead of the busy winter period would help social care teams “continue their impressive record in working innovatively to reduce delayed discharges from hospitals”.  

Jessica Studdert, deputy director of the New Local Government Network, tweeted that the £240m was a “drop in the ocean”.

Hancock said the cash boost is aimed at buying 71,500 domestic care packages and 86,500 ‘reablement packages’.

“We will use this money to get people who don’t need to be in hospital, but do need care, back home, back into their communities, so we can free up those vital hospital beds,” Hancock told the conference.

“And help people who really need it, get the hospital care they need.”

 

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