Radical reform of social care

Radical reform of social care

The most radical reform of the social care system in 64 years is announced today.

The overhaul will mean people will get the care and support they need so they don’t reach crisis point.

The draft Care and Support Bill consolidates many different laws to create a single modern statute for adult care and support.

The Care and Support White Paper, also published today, sets out how the social care system will be transformed from a service that reacts to crises to one that focuses on prevention and is built around the needs and goals of people.This builds on the Government’s decision to prioritise support for social care by providing an additional £7.2bn over four years.

Key elements of the Government’s plans include:

  • Giving people confidence about quality of care: ruling out “contracting by the minute” that turns care workers into clock watchers, and consult on whether more should be done to prioritise continuity of care if a provider goes out of business.
  • Treating people with dignity and respect: more care workers will be trained and they will deliver high quality care. Dignity and respect will be at the heart of a new code of conduct and national minimum training standards will be set.
  • Everyone knowing what they are entitled to: access to care will be consistent through a national threshold for basic care, and people will not have their care interrupted if they move around the country.
  • Everyone having control over their care: people will have clear, practical information and advice on the care system, and a way to report bad care. People who receive state support will be in charge of their budget and have control of their care. To support people to live independently for as long as possible, we will inject £200 million into the supported housing market over the next five years.
  • Giving Carers new rights to public support: the draft Care and Support Bill will, for the first time ever, enshrine in law rights which place carers on the same footing as the people they care for.

The Care and Support White Paper also sets out that:

  • An additional £300 million will be transferred from the NHS to social care. This will support the transformation of local services and promote better integrated care for patients and service users.
  • It will be easier for people to contribute to their communities through volunteering schemes such as time sharing.
  • From October, an extra £3.8 million will be available so veterans do not have to use their injury compensation to pay for care.
  • People who have a disability and live in a care home will no longer have to give up their wages to pay for their care.

Andrew Lansley said:

“Too often people who need care don’t know who or where to go to, don’t know what care they will get and don’t know how it will be paid for.

“Our plans will bring the most comprehensive overhaul of social care since 1948 and will mean that people get the care and support that they need to be safe and to live well so they don’t reach a crisis point.”