Perhaps 2016 will be remembered as the year the UK social care services reached crisis point.
The headlines were bleak: significant funding gaps in community services for older people, which could increase to £2.6bn by 2020; delays in dischargingmedically fit patients from hospital; regular breaches of safe hospital bed occupancy levels; a misalignment between government and the health and care sectors.
The 6% council tax rise announced in December is a start, but it diverts funds from housing and will leave some taxpayers out of pocket. What’s more, it will do little to ease the pressure of an ageing population, struggling without informal or formal care at home and faced with underpaid and overworked care staff battling an overstretched system.
Something has to change – and, fortunately, there are several ways we can begin to work towards a solution in 2017.Read more >