The King’s Fund recently published its 17th Quarterly Monitoring report on NHS performance. The report confirms the detrimental impact that underfunding of social care is having on the NHS, which the Care and Support Alliance has been reporting for a long time.
The report surveyed NHS Finance Directors and Clinical Commissioners. 9 out of 10 NHS Trust Finance Directors and 8 out of 10 Clinical Commissioners said that cuts to care have had a harmful impact on the NHS.
Recent NHS figures also show the correlation between under funding of care and increasing pressures on health services. Delayed discharge from hospital has risen by 70% between May 2014 and May 2015 due a lack of available home care packages. This demonstrates the clear need for proper funding to ensure that local authorities are able to meet the need of social care users and to further prevent a spill over to the NHS.
The King’s Fund has called for social care budgets to be protected from further cuts alongside reinvesting the £6 billion reserved to implement the Dilnot reform (now delayed).
Responding to the report, Chair of the Care and Support Alliance, Vicky McDermott said:
“A poll we carried out earlier this year showed that almost 9 in 10 (88%) GPs believe reductions in social care have contributed to the pressures faced in their surgeries.
The King’s Fund report today confirms that the same proportion of NHS trust finance directors (88%) agree that cuts to care are adversely affecting health services. Investing in health while cutting care is a false economy. We urge the Government to use the forthcoming spending review to address the crisis in care.”