Adult Social Care Employers Contribute £46 Billion to the UK Economy

Skills for Care & Development Chair, Dame Moira Gibb.

Adult social care employers contribute £46.2 billion to the UK economy according to a new report published today.

‘The Economic Value of the Adult Social Care Sector – UK’ report was commissioned by Skills for Care and Development who wanted to find out the extent of the economic impact of a growing sector offering services in 45,000 sites across the UK in 1.8 million job roles.

The first step in determining the sector’s economic contribution was identifying the Gross Value Added (GVA) directly generated by employers including wages paid to workers filling the many different job roles in adult social care. (£24.3 billion)

In addition to measuring the direct impact two further measures were used to estimate the total GVA generated by the sector. The first of these of these was the indirect approach which estimates the GVA created by the sector in its supply chain by purchasing services from other sectors of the economy that might include cleaning services or food suppliers to parts of the sector. (£10.8 billion)

The other was the induced impact of the sector that results from those who are employed directly in the sector and those employed indirectly spending their wages in other sectors of the economy. (£11.1billion)

These three measures of GVA – the direct, indirect and induced – were then combined to give a total spend of £46.2 billion across the UK.

As well as estimating the GVA created by the sector the report also examines the numbers of job roles it supports which totalled 1.8 million, or 1.2 million full time equivalents.

The board of Skills for Care & Development brought together Skills for Care (in England); the Scottish Social Services Council, the Northern Ireland Social Care Council and Social Care Wales to create a robust economic profile for adult social care in the UK. The board agreed there was a clear need for a report into the economic contribution of the sector across the UK and commissioned experienced consultants ICF to write an independent report.

Skills for Care & Development was established in 2002 as the UK Sector Skills Council for people working in early years, children and young people’s services, and those working in social work and social care for adults and children in the UK.

Skills for Care & Development Chair, Dame Moira Gibb said: “This is the first time we have produced a UK wide report into the economic value of adult social care and we find our sector injects billions into the national economy.

“This report highlights the importance of social care not only as provider of services to our fellow citizens when they need it, but our sector’s importance as a provider of jobs in local economies across the country where much of the money is spent.”

The report was also welcomed by the former Chair of the UK Statistics Authority, Sir Andrew Dilnot, who also chaired the Commission on Funding of Care and Support.

“The value of this report is that it provides evidence about what we have always believed anecdotally about the significant economic contribution that adult social care makes across the UK.

“I very much welcome the fact that this report covers the whole of the UK and hope it will help national policymakers recognise that a sector with 1.8 million job roles has not just a vital social value, but a growing economic one too.”

The research was also supported by Association for Real Change Northern Ireland, Association of Directors of Social Services Cymru, Care Forum Wales, Coalition of Care Providers Scotland, Independent Health Care Providers Northern Ireland, Local Government Association, National Care Forum, Scottish Care Social Work Scotland and United Kingdom Homecare Association.

To download a copy of the report go to







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