Care leaders have cautiously welcomed the £500 million adult social care cash boost from the Department of Health and Social Care. However, they have stressed this must be part of a long-term solution for social care.
In a new Our plan for patients, new health and social care secretary Thérèse Coffey announced a raft of measures for social care which aim to establish a strong and sustainable social care sector but, she added: “with greater accountability for use of taxpayers’ money”.
Elements of the £500m cash injection include:
- £500m Adult Social Care Discharge and Workforce Fund to support discharge from hospital into the community and bolster the social care workforce. The fund can be used flexibly by local health and care systems who need to work collaboratively to address local issues and strengthen the sector’s ability to recruit and retain staff.
- The next phase of a national recruitment campaign to encourage more people to join the social care workforce via DWP and Jobcentre Plus.
- £15m to help boost international recruitment of care workers.
- Support for care providers to adopt digital records.
- Delivery of the ‘cap and means test’ social care reforms by October 2023
Launching the investment, Coffey said: “We will shift the balance of funding between health and social care, so people experience a seamless care journey that meets their needs.”
Responding, Care England chief executive said: “What is now needed is a focus on a long-term solution to these underlying issues that puts social care on an equal footing with the NHS and delivers investment that matches the scale and severity of current problems. ”
Care England is calling for care providers to receive a greater proportion of the £13bn due to be generated through the Health and Social Care Levy.