Posted on June 04, 2014

Call for firm commitment to social care funding

The LGA (Local Government Association) has called for the government to make a firm commitment to the Better Care Fund to prevent a serious crisis from developing. The LGA wants the government to commit until 2020, with concerns about what appears to be a lack of clarity over the future of funding for services such as domiciliary home care. There are fears that attempts to integrate health care services could be hampered by this lack of clarity and the LGA wants this commitment to ensure that the local authorities will continue to be able to work together to ensure the best quality care for all concerned. The chairman of the LGA, Sir Merrick Cockell, has stated that it is clear that changes will need to be made to the way in which care services are funded and that the government's five-year commitment would ensure the stability needed to make the required changes to the system. In response, the government has stated that it has already confirmed to the local authorities that the Better Care Fund was created to last for more than 12 months. The aim of the fund is to reduce the number of hospital admissions and provide services for treatment at home, ensuring that people who are discharged from hospital can get better support as they recuperate at home. It also aims to prevent people from being admitted to residential care homes unnecessarily. £5.4 billion has already been pooled by local areas in Better Care Fund plans for 2015/16, which is 40% more than the Department of Health's minimum requirement.
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