CCN welcomes social care funding announcement

CCN Latest News, CCN News 2023 | 28 July 2023

This morning, the Government has announced the allocation of a further £600m of funding set out in the Next Steps to Put People at the Heart of Care, which is to be focused on enabling councils to address the staffing crisis in social care, provide more care at home, support carers and meet the challenge of winter pressures.

This will see £570m distributed directly to councils through the Market Sustainability & Improvement Fund, with a focus on social care workforce and improvement but flexibility for councils to use the funding over the next two years in the most effective way to support people in their communities.

£365m will be allocated for the current year, with the remaining £205m in 2024/25. £30m funding will be allocated to local authorities in the most challenged health systems, though we await further details on this element of the funding.

For information the Government announcement is here.

Last October, CCN called for a minimum 12-month delay to social care reforms, warning councils were facing a ‘perfect storm’ of financial and workforce pressures.  At the same time, we strongly argued that the funding allocated for the reforms should be retained by councils and reprioritised to help tackle the £3.7bn additional inflationary and demand costs already hitting services this year and next.

This timely announcement of a further £600m of this funding being allocated to councils is therefore welcome and will help mitigate some of the financial and workforce pressures over the next 18 months.

There is still an urgent need for a comprehensive plan for the funding and reform of social care which will ensure that those that need care services can receive appropriate and timely care but this announcement will help over the short term.

Cllr Martin Tett, County Councils Network Spokesperson for Adult Social Care said: 

“The County Councils Network (CCN) very much welcome this timely announcement by the Government. The network called for this remaining funding to be provided directly to councils as soon as possible to help tackle additional inflationary costs and demand pressures which are impacting social care services this year and next. 

“With funding split over two years this will help councils mitigate some of the financial and workforce pressures over the next 18 months. It is also positive that the funding will be distributed through the existing Market Sustainability & Improvement Fund without further administrative burdens.”