Leaders express fears over Brexit impact on social care

Leaders of care providers associations across the UK have expressed serious concerns about the impact of Brexit on the sector.

The National Care Forum (NCF) statement highlighted concerns over post-Brexit availability of staff and equipment.

“The social care sector is heavily reliant on a workforce from the across the EU,” the leaders said.

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“On any given day, over 100,000 staff from across the EU are working tirelessly to support some of the UK’s most vulnerable citizens.”

The statement said the prospect of post-Brexit immigration rules threatened to exacerbate current recruitment issues.

It says the categorisation of social care staff as ‘low skilled workers’ by the Migration Advisory Committee did not recognise the expertise demonstrated by front line staff.

The leaders also expressed their concerns about the availability of key resources such as continence products and drugs.

Health and Social Care Secretary Matt Hancock said in August that robust plans were in place to protect the sector in the event of no deal.

The NCF said: “The Government must recognise the interdependencies between the EU and the UK social care sector in ensuring continued access to the skilled workforce and the resources required to deliver quality care.

“We need a Brexit solution which recognised the need to ensure continuity of care across the UK.

“The UK Government needs to take urgent steps to ensure a continuous supply of quality workers from across the globe by determining an exemption for social care staff or addressing the income threshold to better reflect the pay of front line workers.”

The statement follows a CHP poll revealing deep fears in the sector over Brexit’s impact on the social care workforce.

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