A statement from the Age UK Campaigns team: In a Spending Review on the 4th September, the Government has listened to its deep concerns and promised extra money for social care.
Age UK previously said that a says a big cash injection at the Spending Review would be imperative to avert the risk of collapse.
A major new report from Age UK concluded that social care is in desperate need of a long term plan with the funding to match, as is already in place for the NHS, and in the meantime that Wednesday’s Spending Review must direct very substantial additional investment into care services in 2020/2021 to avert the risk of complete collapse in the worst affected districts.
The report, ‘The Health and Care of Older People in England 2019’, draws on many official statistics as well as new Age UK analysis to provide a comprehensive picture of how services are functioning today for older people across the NHS and social care. It builds on Age UK’s previous work and highlights the immense challenges facing older people who need social care, the numbers of whom are increasing every day, and the impact of the failure to provide it on their health and wellbeing, as well as on the NHS.
The analysis presents a tale of woe for social care, with every indicator showing that the system is under extreme duress and in no position to respond adequately to the demands being placed on it by growing numbers of older people and of sick and disabled adults.
System failures are having an adverse impact on the care market with a recent report concluding “the current model has broken down in some areas of the country and is no longer capable of delivering care to people in need”.
Age UK, alongside Alzheimer’s Society, Carers UK, Macmillan Cancer Support and other charities, recently called on the Government to promise at least £1 billion for social care.
However, this is the minimum amount that is necessary to prevent the social care system getting worse. There is still an urgent need for reform. This spending commitment must be followed up by the bold plan the Prime Minister promised in his first speech at No.10.
In July he said that he wanted to ‘give every older person the dignity and security they deserve.’ To achieve this we need to see plans that place the social care system on a sustainable financial footing and provide help and security so many lack.
This Spending Review announcement on social care funding is good news and suggests that the Government is still committed to social care.