NHS Confederation gives 'cautious welcome' to Government's social care funding plans


NHS Confederation interim director of policy Jo Webber welcomed the fact that social care will be resourced without placing further pressure on health budgets and called for further detail on long-term eligibility for social care.

Ms Webber said:

"Today's announcement shows the Government has rightly examined a range of funding options to meet the costs of the Dilnot Commission's proposals. We previously warned that raiding NHS budgets to fund social care would have been akin to rearranging deckchairs while the whole health and care system slowly sank, so we are pleased to see that this warning has been heeded.

"Funding Dilnot's recommendations is only half the story. The fact that we are living longer is a testament to the improvements in health and care we have seen since the inception of the NHS. However, without significant long-term changes to improve the range and reach of social care, the NHS will continue to stagger under the growing needs of our ageing population. This is not only a recipe for disaster for the sustainability of the health service, but it also means that, potentially, people will continue to find themselves in a crisis before they get the care and support they require and rightly deserve.

"We need to see a clear outline of eligibility thresholds so that people understand the levels of support they can expect in old age, and so the NHS - working with its local partners - can plan to provide the right care and support for people where and when they need it."