Age UK response to a new report by the Health & Social Care Committee Report
Published on 22 October 2020 10:59 AM
Caroline Abrahams, Charity Director at Age UK said:
"It's a first, and a very welcome one, for a cross party group of MPs, chaired by a recent Secretary of State for Health, to acknowledge that social care is underfunded to the tune of 'tens of billions' of pounds: now we need the Government to show the same intellectual honesty and commit to finding the cash. There are no short cuts when it comes to restoring social care to a condition of decency and it's imperative that we act. Otherwise we are colluding with a care system which the committee rightly says is so inadequate that some of the most vulnerable people in our society and their families find it "frightening. Surely, as a country we can do better than that.
"One of the features of the committee's report is just how long their list is of what has to be fixed, so the Government needs to bring forward a package of funded measures that deal with each of the problems which are dragging the system down. The pandemic has demonstrated that proper workforce planning and a step change in the terms and conditions of staff must be central and we know that the public is keen to see the sacrifice and dedication of so many care workers receiving their just reward.
"This report makes clear that when it comes to reforming social care we need to be ambitious; tinkering will not do, transformational change is what's required, even if it takes some time to get there. It can only be done by taking the public with us, so the sooner Ministers are prepared to talk openly about how much it will cost to create a system of care worthy of the name, and the enormous benefits this would bring, the better. Older and disabled people and their carers have already waited far too long."