William Eichler 23 October 2019

NHS study reveals ‘growing’ pressure on social care sector

NHS study reveals ‘growing’ pressure on social care sector image

A charity has called for an ‘urgent solution’ to the care crisis as a study reveals councils received nearly two million requests for adult social care support from new clients last year.

A report published by NHS Digital shows that local authorities received 1.9 million requests for adult social care support from new clients during 2018-19.

The equivalent to 5,245 requests for support each day, this marks an increase of 3.8% since 2017-18.

Local authority spending on adult social care rose to £18.7bn in 2018-19, which is an increase of £807m on last year. This is a cash increase of 4.5% and a real-terms increase of 2.6%.

Responding to the new figures, Dr Alison Giles, associate director of the Centre for Ageing Better, said that an ‘urgent solution’ was required for the social care crisis.

‘Demand is growing and resources are stretched, so right now only people with the highest levels of need get help,’ Dr Giles said.

‘The risk is that those with less serious conditions will miss out on the care they need now, leading them to need much greater and potentially more costly support in the long run.

‘We desperately need a sustainable funding solution for social care. But we also need to reduce demand by investing in prevention.

‘Disability, frailty and some forms of dementia can be prevented or delayed, so we must put more resource and effort into helping people to stay healthy and independent for as long as possible.’

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