Yesterday, the Health and Social Care Secretary Jeremy Hunt outlined the key principles for the forthcoming social care green paper in a speech.
Responding to the speech, Cllr Colin Noble, health and social care spokesman for the County Councils Network, said:
“In recent weeks, a spotlight has been shone on county councils struggling with the financial pressures of delivering social care services at a time of unprecedented funding cuts mixed with increasing demand. Counties alone are facing a social care funding gap of over £1bn by 2021 and receive the lowest per-head funding for their elderly populations.
“Social care needs fundamental reform; not short-term political fixes. Therefore, we welcome the government’s commitment to finding a long-term solution and the principles that will underpin the Green Paper set out by the Secretary of State.
“Clearly, a sustainable solution for social care requires significant new money and a fair distribution of resources based on need.
“No individual should be subject to catastrophic care costs as a result of the onset of conditions which are beyond their control. This is why CCN welcomes the proposals to limit costs. Proposals such be equitable, fully funded and not destabilise already precarious local care markets.
“System reform is needed to sit side-by-side any injection of funding. We would encourage government to explore a more holistic person-centred approach to health and social care, with prevention at its heart.
“County authorities have been at the coalface of delivering quality social care in challenging circumstances.. Last year, they got their heads down and drastically improved delayed discharge waiting times. If sustainable solutions to social care are to be found, counties must be firmly part of the question.”