Age UK’s response to White Paper on social care

Following publication of the long-awaited White Paper on social care, Age UK’s Charity Director Caroline Abrahams has released a statement which can be read in full below.

Caroline Abrahams, Charity Director of Age UK and Co-Chair of the Care and Support Alliance said:

“This White Paper sets out some important, long overdue policy advances, but lack of investment means any changes will be modest and slow to arrive, whereas the scale of the challenge is huge and demands urgent action now. The millions of older and disabled people putting up with inadequate services, if they get any service at all, needed the Paper to turbo-charge a process of transformation, but that was never going to be possible with the meagre funding allocated by the Treasury to it at the Spending Review. Rather than the Formula One vehicle that was required, the Paper is an underpowered saloon car at best.

Over time, the Paper’s provisions to improve data collection, spread the use of IT across the care sector and put in place a stronger workforce infrastructure are likely to prove extremely valuable, the foundations of a less intensely fragile system in future. However, in all honesty most people would reasonably expect these basics to be in place already. The fact they are not reflects how badly social care has been neglected by governments for far too long. The Paper signals an important acknowledgement that this must now change, but one can’t help but be conscious of just how far there is to go before every older and disabled person who needs a decent care service actually receives it – we are way behind some other comparable countries in this respect. 

Meanwhile, Rome burns. Chronic workforce shortages are the biggest concern and seem to be getting worse, with uncompetitive pay the main culprit. There is nothing in the Paper to suggest the Government has any real strategy for dealing with it, given the lack of care funding overall. If Covid surges this winter because of the new variant these workforce problems will be magnified, with potentially disastrous consequences. There are similar concerns about unpaid carers collapsing after an unbelievably challenging twenty months too.

Mapping out a positive journey is incredibly hard when you are essentially in the midst of a crisis, the ground wobbling below your feet. That’s where social care is today, and it means that until the Government does more to put out the immediate fires, any efforts to craft a better future always risk achieving much less than they should or being undermined along the way.”

Caroline Abrahams, Charity Director of Age UK and Co-Chair of the Care and Support Alliance

NHS Anticipatory Care Webinars

A series of webinars for staff who are looking to deliver Anticipatory Care or who want to enhance their existing models.

The NHS England and NHS Improvement Community Services and Ageing Well team are running a series of information sharing webinars on Anticipatory Care. These webinars are aimed at any staff working in health and care, who are looking to either start delivering Anticipatory Care or who would like to enhance their existing models. Find out how to register below.

The series will provide:

  • An opportunity to find out more about Anticipatory Care, inc. information on upcoming guidance and policy;
  • An overview of synergies with other policy / programme areas, and an explanation of how this fits within the Integration agenda outlined in the NHS Long Term Plan and recent White Paper;
  • Deep dives into topics particularly pertinent to Anticipatory Care delivery.

In these sessions we will hear from areas delivering innovative models of Anticipatory Care and there will be opportunities to ask questions of both the national policy team as well as our range of speakers.

To register for any of the sessions or for more information please follow the links below:

If you have any questions, please contact Tom Gentry on the Age UK Health Influencing Team: tom.gentry@ageuk.org.uk.

Webinar Recording: The Future of the Health and Care System

View the recording of a recent webinar from Age UK’s Health Influencing team which looks at the White Paper on Health and Social Care.

The Health Influencing Team recently held a webinar which looked at the Government’s White Paper which sets out changes to the way the Health and Care System will operate in England. This webinar looked at what these changes are, why they are happening and what opportunities there may be for Age UK Network and the wider VCSE. You can view a recording of the webinar here or read on for more information.

The speakers in the webinar include:

  • Ruthe Isden, Head of Health Influencing on the White Paper
  • Nicola Upton, CEO Age UK Sutton on their experiences of working within their local health and care system
  • Roger Davidson, Director of System Transformation at NHS England on how it will work.

If you missed the webinar but would like to catch up you can find a recording here.

For any further information or questions please get in touch with healthinfluencing@ageuk.org.uk

Two upcoming care webinars

Age UK’s Health Influencing Team and SCIE are both holding upcoming webinars on care. Find out how to book for either event.

There are two upcoming webinars on care which you may wish to attend. The first webinar is hosted by Age UK’s Health Influencing Team and will unpack the latest developments following the publication of the Government’s White Paper on the Health and Care System in England. The second webinar is organised by Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE) and looks at delivering safe, face-to-face adult day care. You can find out all the details of both webinars, including how to register, below.

The Future of the Health and Care System webinar: White Paper, ICSs and what it means for you | 31 March from 4:00 – 5:00pm

The Health Influencing Team are hosting a webinar which will unpack the latest developments following the publication of the Government’s White Paper which sets out changes to the way the Health and Care System will operate in England. This webinar will look at what these changes are, why they are happening and what opportunities there may be for Age UK Network and the wider VCSE.

We will be hearing from the Head of Health Influencing, Ruthe Isden on the White Paper, Age UK Sutton on their experiences of working within their local health and care system and Roger Davidson the Director of System Transformation at NHS England on how it will work.

You can sign up to the webinar here.

There’s an opportunity to suggest questions on sign up but you can also send through any questions to healthinfluencing@ageuk.org.uk by Wednesday 24th March.

The webinar will be taking place on Microsoft Teams, once signed up we will send through a diary invitation with the link.

The webinar will be recorded for you to view at your convenience. If you cannot attend but have a question, please do still submit it and we will be happy to try to answer it.

Delivering safe, face-to-face adult day care | 24 March from 13:30pm – 14:30pm

This webinar aims to support the safe delivery of adult day care services by highlighting key guidance including SCIE’s Delivering safe, face-to-face adult day care guide, providing practical examples, supporting connections with other providers and responding to key questions from the sector.

To register, please click here.