A NEW social-care system, fully resourced with a fair price for care, is one of the demands of a campaign run by the country’s largest charitable provider of care, Methodist Homes (MHA).
More than 790 letters have been sent to MPs by supporters, backing the campaign #FixCareForAll, which was launched last month. More than 600,000 people have supported the campaign on social media.
“We are now heading towards the 100th week since the Prime Minister stood on the doorstep of Number 10 and pledged to fix social care once and for all with prepared plans that the sector is still yet to see,” the chief executive of MHA, Sam Monaghan, said last week. “The time for action is now upon us.” The public was “increasingly concerned that this critical issue keeps being shelved. We will be keeping up this pressure to #FixCareForAll until firm proposals are published, and we can scrutinise them.”
Polling of 2000 people commissioned by MHA before the launch found that 69 per cent said that social care should be a top priority for the Government; 43 per cent believed that the Government did not care about the needs of older people.
MHA is among multiple organisations, including the King’s Fund, that are warning that current levels of funding for adult social care are inadequate. Age UK estimates that 1.4 million older people do not have access to all the care and support that they need.
MHA is calling for a “comprehensive national social care workforce strategy”, transparency and accountability in the use of funding, care co-designed with older people, and “seamless pathways and collaboration between health and social care”. Among those supporting the campaign are Independent Age, the Alzheimer’s Society, Dementia UK, and the NHS Confederation.
The Health Foundation has calculated that, to meet growth in demand caused by an ageing population, to increase the amount of care available, and to pay more for care, an additional £14.4 billion would need to be spent on adult social care in 2030. Having promised in July 2019 that he had a “prepared plan” for fixing social care, the Prime Minister has not yet produced it (News, 14 May).
The King’s Fund has highlighted that, in the past 25 years, there have been eight Green Papers, four White Papers, many independent recommendations for reform, and two government-commissioned inquiries on reforming social care. The Archbishops announced their own commission in April (News, 23 April).