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Social care: what exactly is broken?

Stakeholders need to understand what it is that needs fixing – is it the service that is broken or the funding or the workforce?

In an event hosted by apetito at the Residential & Home Care Show, National Care Association chairman Nadra Ahmed urged stakeholders in care to “stop thinking about social care as something to be fixed; as a problem”. Instead, she said: “Social care is the solution to many NHS problems. If you invest in social care, the NHS won’t have problems with discharge.”

She asked why governments were not looking at solutions such as redistributing NHS funding to social care, and why people are not “jumping up and down” about inequalities affecting the oldest and frailest members of society. Instead, providers have been told there is no more money for social care, she said.

In questions, Ahmed told the audience that she had no confidence in the fair funding initiative, and that she feared there could be conflicts of interest for care homes that are operated by local authorities. But care home providers have got to work with it, so that something comes out of it. “It is an opportunity so put in costs and do it right,” she said.

Turning to the National Care Service she said: “What does that mean? Is it about taking independent providers out of the market? Is it nationalisation?”

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