Laura Sharman 05 March 2015

Councils unable to fund Care Act duties, suggests survey

Councils unable to fund Care Act duties, suggests survey

Councils do not have enough funding to meet their duties under the Care Act, according to new research.

A survey of adult social care directors, conducted by Independent Age and the MJ, revealed that not one council said it had sufficient funding to implement the Care Act what it comes into force next month.

The main concern highlighted in the survey was the cost of the new IT systems needed to implement the Act, such as checking when someone has reached the care cap of £72,000.

The ‘wellbeing’ duty was also a cause for concern amongst the director, and none of the councils surveyed said they were ‘fully confident’ they had enough funding to implement this new repsonsibilty.

Heather Jameson, editor of the MJ, said: ‘We have reached a crisis in adult social care that is just not going to go away without a radical overhaul of public services across the board. Protecting health budgets while cutting council cash will just create tensions between the two when they should be working together to provide a seamless service.’

Those surveyed also revealed concerns that fulfilling the new rights for careers was ‘likely to dwarf the new funding made available’.

Janet Morrison, chief executive of Independent Age, said: ‘It is absolutely right that carers are getting a fairer deal under the Care Act. For too long, carers have been denied the basic help they need to manage their caring role, but we worry these aspirations risk not being fulfilled.

‘The Budget is less than two weeks away and local authorities must get the funding they need to carry out their responsibilities. This means protecting spending on adult care in the same way politicians of all parties have pledged to protect the NHS.’

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