Social care ‘severely underfunded’, charity says

Immediate action is required by the next government to tackle the severe underfunding of social care, according to The Health Foundation.

The findings were published in the first of three briefings on the NHS and social care ahead of the June general election.

While welcoming the government’s additional funding for social care, The Health Foundation says the sector faces estimates a £600m funding gap in 2017/18 rising to £2.1bn by 2019/20.

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The Health Foundation calls on the next government to address the funding gap and commit to full implementation of the Care Act 2014 to provide protection from “catastrophic care costs” by limiting the amount of individual spending on social care to £72,000.

The report also calls for acceleration in the funding of social care to take a greater proportion of GDP beyond 2020.

One in ten of the over 65s face lifetime social care costs of over £100,000, according to the charity.

The report found that 400,000 fewer people received publicly funded care in 2012/13 compared with 2009/10 despite rising demand.

It calls for the establishment of an independent financial body for the NHS to lay out the long term financial outlook of health and social care as outlined by the House of Lords Committee on Sustainability.

 

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