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Providers languish in the outer darkness

By Caring Times editor GEOFF HODGSON

At the end of last week a group of more than 30 organisations led by the Local Government Association called for social care to be “reset” in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, and called on the government to publish a timetable for reform.

I have listed the 30-plus organisations at the end of this blog in order that people can confirm for themselves that care providers are either not interested in the called-for timetable, or that they were not invited to add their voice to the lobby; I suspect the latter.

In promulgating its initiative this group said “Care providers have played a critical role in the last few months in keeping people safe and well, alongside the NHS.” This being so, one would have thought that care providers, who have consistently called for reform for the past two decades, would have been included as signatories.

The group has put forward seven key principles for reform (also listed below), the fifth of which is “How care is provided and commissioned”. Surely this is of sovereign interest to care providers. This apparent alienation of key stakeholders cannot be helpful and we must hope that when, one day, the government does get around to leading another discussion on social care reform, it is a little more inclusive in its approach.

The seven key principles:

  • Putting people first
  • The importance of social care’s local dimension
  • Adequate and sustainable funding
  • Supporting the care workforce
  • How care is provided and commissioned
  • Health and integration
  • The scope of care and support reform

Signatories to the seven key principles: Local Government Association, Association of Directors of Adult Social Services, Association of Directors of Public Health, Alzheimer’s Society, British Association of Social Workers, Centre for Ageing Better, Care Quality Commission, Carers Trust, Carers UK, CIPFA, Coalition for Collaborative Care, Equity Release Council, Healthwatch England, Independent Age, Institute for Public Policy Research, Ipsos MORI, Mencap, Mind, National Development Team for Inclusion, NHS Clinical Commissioners, NHS Confederation, NHS Providers, Power to Change, Principal Social Worker National Network (Adults), Scope, Sense, Shared Lives Plus, Skills for Care, Social Care Institute for Excellence, Society of Local Authority Chief Executives and Senior Managers, Think Local Act Personal, Voluntary Organisations Disability Group.

  • The CT Blog is written in a personal capacity – comments and opinions expressed are not necessarily endorsed or supported by Caring Times.

2 Replies to “Providers languish in the outer darkness”

  1. Geoff: thanks for drawing attention to the gap between the virtue signalling commentators, regulators , commissioners etc and the providers whose opinions the commentators do not appear to have consulted

  2. Well said, Geoff. A key reason the Government has been able to ignore social care for so long is that the sector is so divided. The omission of providers’ associations from this LGA group does nothing to address this fundamental problem – quite the reverse, it emphasises it. Is the LGA incapable of learning from past mistakes or is it only interested in its own local agenda and not in the bigger picture ?

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