More cuts to Adults Services and Declining Quality
- 15 Feb
A third of directors of Adults Social Services say they plan to cut services next year, and half say the quality of services has already declined.
The King's Fund quarterly monitoring report, published yesterday, shows that the financial squeeze is 'beginning to bite hard' with adult social services.
The study shows that two-thirds of NHS finance directors and nearly three-quarters of directors of adult social services (DASSs) pessimistic about the financial outlook across their local health and social care system in 2013.
Cuts to services
36% of the directors said they were planning to reduce the volume of services that their council funded in the next year. They do not expect this to be with raise eligibility criteria but most already restrict help to those with ‘substantial’ needs, and some are planning to increase the charges faced by clients.
A third are predicting to overspend their budgets next year, and even though councils have a good track record of this, it is now much more difficult to make further savings without directly cutting services or affecting quality of services. The overspend is set to have a significant impact on access to social care services, with more than a third of DA SSs anticipating having to reduce services over the next year.
Growing concerns about the quality of care
The report shows growing concerns about the quality of health and social care, with a third of finance directors report that the quality of NHS care in their area has deteriorated over the past 12 months, compared with only about one in six in the previous review.
46% of directors of adult social services thought that the quality of services they commissioned had worsened in the past year.
The findings are likely to increase concerns about councils' capacity to maintain the quality and capacity of adult social care services amid rising demand pressures and cuts in their budgets. The government's proposal to spend £1bn a year by 2020 limiting the costs of self-funders' care was criticised by some campaigners as the wrong priority at a time when councils were struggling to meet the needs of existing service users.
Pressures on services
Delayed transfers of care are a concern for many NHS organisations. The Kings Fund have said that investigation is needed of the difference between the impression that the official statistics give of a stable amount of delays, compared with the views that the finance directors have given which do not match.
There is also growing pressure on emergency care, with the proportion of patients waiting longer than four hours in accident and emergency departments at its highest level for this quarter since 2003/4 and a quarter of all providers recording breaches of the target in the quarter to December 2012. Two thirds of finance directors also said that delayed transfers of care in their area or trust had got worse over the past year.
Further cuts will only exacerbate the strain on key services, however the NHS has so far managed to maintain the massive reductions in waiting times it achieved by the middle of 2009, as well as continued reductions in health care-acquired infection rates
The Kings Fund conclude that the social services and local government in general, will face an even tougher financial situation as a result of the government’s deficit reduction strategy.
Image source: http://www.sxc.hu/photo/884071
- 25 May
CARE HAS IMPROVED CONSIDERABLY IN ENGLAND
Almost three fourth of 372 care homes rated inadequate in 2014 and still operating have improved.205 care homes have improved from a low rating to requiring improvement, 68 are now rated good and 99...
- 24 May
NHS ADJUSTMENTS TO BUDGET CUTS
NHS trusts which have been previously rated good or outstanding will not be inspected as frequently as before, but those rated as inadequate will be regularly visited by the CQC.The Guardian reports...
- 19 Mar
Government to inspect if housing can reduce NHS costs
In the Budget document the government have said it's looking at the ‘cost-effectiveness of options to integrate spending around some of the most vulnerable groups of people.' This includes...
- 15 Oct
End of life patients are lacking support
The charity has found that almost 92% of NHS clinical commissioning groups do not provide round the clock telephone helplines, reports the BBC.Guidelines say there should be 24-hour telephone...
- 15 Sep
Social care is being limited due to council cuts
ADASS are warning that cuts are making the care system "unsustainable" with charities saying hundreds of thousands of people are struggling without help, even though the government says councils have...
- 17 Jul
Young people should not be placed in B&Bs says MPs
The Commons Education Select Committee has said that B&B accommodation is "threatening and frightening" and should only be used in emergency situations reports the BBC.MPs say that young people...
- 16 Jul
Special measures system designed to improve failing care homes
A scheme similar to special measures of hospitals will be introduced for care homes and home care agencies next year, ministers will say, reports the BBC.This will cover 25,000 services and could...
- 14 Jul
Research says that one in three Alzheimer's cases can be prevented
The research says that the main risk factors of Alzheimer's is lack of exercise, smoking, depression and poor education, reports the BBC. Alzheimer's Research UK said age was still the biggest risk...
- 10 Jul
NHS boss says those with vulnerabilities need joint health and care budget
Simon Stevens wants to see older people, those with disabilities and people with serious mental health problems given joint pots from the NHS and council-run social care services, reports the...
- 17 Jun
Council falters in reviewing autistic man’s care plan
According to Community Care:"The ruling was made by the Local Government Ombudsman after the man's mother complained that his physical and mental health deteriorated in the two-year period after...
Revenue Optimisation "I am really impressed with Support Solutions and how small organisations are supported with information and training" Susan Harrison (Tenant Support Services)