This quarterly briefing aims to provide health and social care professionals with a summary of the issues raised with Healthwatch
Between July and September over 10,500 people shared their experiences of using health and social care with Healthwatch. This briefing looks at 128 reports published by local Healthwatch and aims to provide health and social care professionals with a summary of the issues people have raised with us.
What issues does the briefing look at?
Emerging themes across primary care, hospital care, social care and mental health. For example, the importance of good communication when GP services are changing and people’s mental health and physical health not being given equal consideration in A&E.
In focus – the support available for people with incontinence and how services can help by making sure patients can easily access the continence products they need.
Spotlight on experiences – the challenges people from diverse ethnic communities can face when using health and care services.
Ash| September 2019 | The costs of smoking to the English National Health System
Ash the smoking support charity have commissioned research to measure the impact of smoking on the need for social care. This updated previous analyses of the cost of smoking on social care; and a multi-wave analysis of the English Longitudinal Study of Ageing (ELSA) and the Health Survey for England was undertaken.
The analysis finds that 670,000 people have care needs as a result of smoking:
• 25,000 adults receive social care from their local authority because they
smoke or smoked;
• 5,000 adults receive social care they pay for themselves because they smoke
• 345,000 adults receive informal social care because they smoke or
smoked; and a further
• 300,000 adults have unmet care needs because they smoke or smoked
The costs of the additional care needed due to smoking are high to both local authorities
and smokers themselves:
• The cost of smoking-related social care to local authorities is £720 million
• The cost of smoking-related social care to individuals who pay for their
own care is £160 million a year (Source: Ash)
Centre for Mental Health | September 2019 | Social care funding and mental health
The latest policy briefing from the Centre for Mental Health looks at what a fair and sustainable funding settlement for social care needs to look like in order to deliver parity of esteem for mental health and sufficient funding to support people of working age as well as those in later life.
In their latest briefing, the Centre for Mental Health look at what a fair and sustainable funding settlement for social care needs to look like in order to deliver equity of esteem for mental health and sufficient funding to support people of working age as well as those in later life.
Social care funding and mental health reviews the current funding and provision of mental health social work for people of working age in England. It finds that mental health social work has a vital role in helping people to live independently and to secure their rights and dignity. Local authorities also support carers and commission advocacy services, including for people subject to the Mental Health Act
The briefing concludes that the new settlement for social care must therefore:
• Provide parity of esteem for mental health with other social service functions
• Secure fair funding for people of working age
• Resolve the confusion between health, housing and social care funding for people
with ongoing care needs
• Enable local councils to invest for the future in their workforce and their community(Source: Centre for Mental Health).
This ‘long read’ sets out five messages for government about priorities and options for social care reform in England, based on an assessment of the evidence and analysis of the costs of reform. It focuses primarily on changes to the funding system rather than other policy questions such as the relationship between the NHS and social care | The Health Foundation
This analysis from the Health Foundation sets out five priorities for the new government for social care:
To stabilise the current social care system, which is at risk of collapse. The Health Foundation estimates this would cost £4.4bn by 2023/24. In 2020/21, this would cost £1bn.
To protect individuals against unfair and catastrophic care costs. A range of approaches could be used here. The Health Foundation recommends a Dilnot-style model where the government can set the maximum amount individuals would be required to pay over their life time. An approach whereby the maximum cost was capped at £46,000 would cost government an additional £3.1bn per annum by 2023/24.
To increase eligibility and access to social care. To reinstate levels of access to 2010 levels would cost an additional £8.1bn, according to Health Foundation analysis.
To see the capped cost model as a flexible approach to reform. The principle of a cap on care costs was included in the 2014 Care Act and could be put in place without new legislation.
To explore a range of options for raising revenue. After a decade of austerity in public finances, cutting other services to pay for social care is not feasible or desirable. Increases in tax revenue is likely to be needed, although borrowing could also play a part.
The King’s Fund | July 2019 | A short history of social care funding reform in England: 1997 to 2019
Since the 1990s, funding for social care has been widely seen to be unfair, and successive governments have attempted to reform the overall approach to funding adult social care but without success. The King’s Fund outline the history of the past 22 years of attempts to reform how social care funded (Source: The King’s Fund).