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New Care Service proposals aim to shave £1.2bn off set-up costs

Scotland’s Minister for Social Care, Mental Wellbeing and Sport Maree Todd has proposed three cost-saving changes to the National Care Service bill, now entering its second stage.

In measures that cut projected costs to a fifth, Todd proposes to change the Bill to the following:

  • Establish a National Care Service Board to oversee delivery  
  • Reform existing Integration Authorities rather than create new local Care Boards
  • Retain responsibility for current functions and the delivery of social work and social care services in local authorities with no transfer of staff or assets.

In a statement, Todd said that changes would cut the bill for setting up the NCS from £1.6 billion over 10 years to £345 million.

She added: “This… reflects the challenges of a new fiscal environment, where it is more important than ever that we demonstrate value for money. The costs of change would be under 1% of current spend; we can make meaningful, lasting change for that relatively modest amount.”

The Bill as introduced commits to a National Care Service Charter, including a national approach to managing complaints, data sharing and care records, breaks for carers; and it includes provisions to enact Anne’s Law, so that people in care homes have the right to be visited by their families. 

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