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Jeremy Hunt commenting on Surrey Care Association manifesto for social care reform

Former health secretary voices concern over Health & Care Bill

Health and Social Care Committee Chair Jeremy Hunt has voiced caution over the introduction to Parliament of the Health and Care Bill.

The Bill intends to deliver a package of measures designed to improve oversight and accountability in the delivery of social care services through new assurance and data sharing measures. There will also be an update of the legal framework to enable person-centred models of hospital discharge, and introduce improved powers for the Secretary of State to directly make payments to adult social care providers where required.

Introducing the Bill, Sir Simon Stevens, NHS chief executive, said: “Proposals for integrated care… remove outdated and bureaucratic legal barriers to joined-up working… by enabling mutual support between different parts of the local health and care services.”

However, voicing caution Health and Social Care Committee chair Jeremy Hunt MP describes the Bill as a missed opportunity to publish the detail of planned reform to funding and workforce in social care. He said: “While we welcome the direction of travel in health and care services outlined by the Bill, the proposals for Integrated Care Systems must be subject to transparent and independent Ofsted-style assessments on the quality and safety of care if improvements are to be delivered.”

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