Funding key to social care sustainability

A new report has said that the governments’ failure to properly fund social care is leaving millions of people at risk of losing vital support.

True Costs: Why we cannot ignore the failure in social care funding, published by the Voluntary Organisations Disability Group (VODG), says that the chronic under-funding of social care must be reversed and vital action is required to improve services.

By 2025 there will be 11.7 million disabled people in England, and, alongside increasing demand for services and rising costs of providing services, means that more older people will need disability-specific support because of our ageing population.

Additionally, national figures show that in 2017, were an estimated 90,000 vacancies across the adult social care sector at any given time.

The report demands that government must identify a long term, sustainable funding solution particularly for working age adults and drop the retrospective action to recover mistaken underpayment of NLW for sleep-in shifts from some providers. It also urges the government to work with relevant bodies, VODG included, to develop a plan for a sustainable social care workforce.

Rhidian Hughes, VODG chief executive, said: “The issue of squeezed funding, increasing demand, increasing costs and workforce challenges has wider ramifications. There will be a direct impact on the lives of disabled people as well as a knock-on effect on other public sector services such as the NHS. The government must develop a strong, sustainable funding plan for social care unless it wants to risk damaging both the quality and quantity of support services available to people who most rely on them.”