Care stakeholders respond to Spring Budget

Money

Care stakeholders from the worlds of care, property and banking have given their reaction to the Chancellor’s announcement of £2bn in additional funding for social care.

The Chancellor made his pledge along with news of the publication of a Green Paper on the financing of social care during his Spring Budget on Wednesday (see BREAKING NEWS: Chancellor provides £2bn additional social care funding).

Care reaction

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Professor Martin Green OBE chief executive for Care England said: “Whilst the £2 billion additional funding over three years for adult social care is welcome it will only be an efficient use of tax payers money should the Green Paper on Adult Social Care deliver the reforms that are necessary to put the system on a stable footing.”

Dave Lock, Adept managing director, told Care Home Professional: “Clearly the care sector is experiencing troubled times and this can only help alleviate some funding pressures. We will have to see though if it is enough to have the impact required and a sustainable solution is hopefully next on the agenda.”

Jonathan Garton, operations director of Yorkare, added that the funding was only a “temporary solution” and more forward thinking, including combined work between the local authorities and NHS teams would be vital.

While welcoming the government recognition that the sector was under pressure, Helen Simmons, chief executive of Nightingale Hammerson, added: “It’s disappointing that the Chancellor only allocated an additional £2 billion, considering the current state of the care system and that more than double that amount has been taken out of social care funding in the past six years.

“The system needs more than this amount just to get care back to where it was six years ago – we are forever playing catch-up and being reactive rather than strategic. With a funding crisis imminent, by the time that this proposed increase is implemented, the problem will only have got worse.”

Sara McKee, founder and director of new retirement living model provider Evermore said the extra funding was “akin to putting a plaster on a broken leg”.

“The system won’t be fixed by propping it up to limp along for a few more years,” Sara said.

“We need the social care sector to embrace new models of service delivery.”

Property and banking

Chris Wishart, director of Healthcare at Savills cautioned that it remained to be established whether the £2bn was actually “new money” or just being dressed up as it.

Michael Hodges, head of Healthcare Consultancy at Christie & Co, said it was very important that the government moved quickly to ensure that councils received the additional funding as soon as possible, while adding the “real test will be the fee rate increases which operators actually achieve”.

Derek Breingan, head of Health and Social Care, Clydesdale & Yorkshire Banks commented that while the details of the proposals remained to be confirmed they had the “potential to help stabilise the current system and bridge the Better Care Fund initiative”.

More reaction to follow.

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