Responding to new analysis by Age UK revealing the number of older people in England who struggle without the help they need to carry out essential everyday tasks, Cllr Izzi Seccombe, Chairman of the Local Government Association’s Community Wellbeing Board, said:
“There is now a real need to raise national awareness of what social care is, why it matters and why it has to become more of a priority for the public and the Government. These figures illustrate the scale of the pressure facing adult social care services which are so critical to the wellbeing and independence of people with a complex range of needs, their carers and families.
“Our analysis has found that social care for the elderly and disabled faces a funding gap of at least £2.6 billion. People increasingly unable to access the support they need as services cease or become increasingly rationed is a symptom of those funding pressures and is also clearly having a knock-on impact on the NHS.
“Unless social care is properly funded, there remains a growing risk to the quality and safety of care, and the ability of services caring for our elderly and vulnerable to meet basic needs such as ensuring people are washed and dressed or helped out of bed.
“Councils, care providers, charities, the NHS and the public are all united around the need for central government to take urgent action.
“The Government must use the Autumn Statement to provide councils with the funding to ensure we have a fair care system which ensures the care our loved ones receive goes beyond just helping them to get washed, dressed and fed, but to supporting them to live dignified, independent lives, as well as alleviating the pressure on the NHS.”