Care England, the largest representative body for independent providers of adult social care, has submitted written evidence to HM Treasury’s Comprehensive Spending Review emphasising the need for Government to act immediately in order to stabilise the sector or face serious and far reaching consequences.
Professor Martin Green OBE, Chief Executive of Care England, says:
“We have used Care England’s submission as yet another mechanism to drive home to Government the precarious state of the adult social care sector with particular reference to the workforce and funding crises. We have offered some constructive solutions as to how the Government can alleviate this situation and hope that we can work with them to deliver the sustainable development of adult social care”.
For the immediate term, Care England’s proposals include:
- Immediate investment and policy change to ensure the sustainability of the adult social care workforce in the winter months.
- Clarity regarding the arrangements and funding regarding the Government’s Build Back Better Plan for health and social care and the Government to work with the sector to understand the practicalities.
- The continuation of the testing and infection fund beyond six months, in order to provide certainty to the adult social care sector. This expires today, 30 September.
- Adding all care workers to the Shortage Occupation List and reducing the salary threshold in the Health and Care Visa. The Government has taken steps to enable HGV drivers into the country and the same urgency needs to be attached to the adult social care sector.
In the long term proposals include:
- A ten-year workforce plan, akin to that of the NHS, where career progression, pay and rewards are identified, something that the Build Back Better Plan fails to do.
- Treasury to consult those policy options presented in the Health and Social Care Committee’s report to level up pay and reward in the adult social care sector.
- The National Living Wage uplift to be fully funded within the context of the publicly funded adult social care sector.
- Sufficient support and funding for sector bodies such as Skills for Care. This disparity is currently evident in terms of the funding levels between Health Education England and Skills for Care.
The Chancellor, Rt Hon Rishi Sunak MP, is due to deliver the Comprehensive Spending Review on 27 October alongside an Autumn Budget.
Martin Green continues:
“Failure to support the sector will result in unprecedented demand on the NHS, a loss to local economies and of course a failure to deliver care to those most in need. We hope that our submission will be considered”.