A short term solution to a long-term problem

Today, Care England, the largest representative body of independent providers of adult social care in England, has welcomed the Government announcement of a £500m social care boost.

It is understood that the £500m will be designated to social care authorities to be spent on children and adult services, distributed through the Social Care Grant. Further details on the exceptional provision of this funding will be set out at the upcoming Budget.

Professor Martin Green OBE, Chief Executive of Care England, says:

“This injection of funding is a welcome recognition of the challenges faced by local authorities and care providers alike. However, the Government must move away from short-term sticking plasters and towards strategic allocations of money that will truly benefit the sector.” 

The 2023 Sector Pulse Check found that 84% of care providers felt Government funding made no difference to their sustainability, the ambition to manage service performance and reduce wasteful expenditure is to be welcomed.

The National Audit Office report, Reforming Adult Social Care in England, showed significant inadequacies and delays in the Department of Health and Social Care’s delivery of reform plans. Care England has called on the Government to mirror their request to local authorities and publish their own ‘productivity plans,’ with tangible success measures.

The new money announced today still falls shy of mitigating the 10.4% impact that the rise in NLW will cost providers. With 39% of providers considering exiting the market, according to the 2023 Sector Pulse Check, there is still more to be done.

Professor Martin Green continues:

“Against the backdrop of the rises in the National Living Wage, rising utility costs, and the gap from the Fair Cost of Care being largely unaddressed, this new money in isolation runs the risk of being another short-term solution of money in the face of a problem that needs long-term funding to resolve.”