White paper is a step towards integrated care
Pushpa Raguvaran, Chief Executive of Housing 21, commented on the White Paper on Social Care:
“I warmly welcome the establishment of a capital fund (worth £200million over five years) to develop specialised new housing for older people. Our extra care model has been a proven success, helping people live independently for longer.
“I am pleased that the Government recognises the importance of a cap for individual spending on social care and for much greater consistency of access.
“We also welcome the additional funding to support integrated housing, health and social care. All too often, integrated services happen in spite of, rather than because of, existing frameworks. Integrated commissioning, shared outcomes and an overarching funding system which recognises the health gains of housing and social care is key to future success. Helping older people inside and outside of hospital, supporting independent living, preventing hospital admissions and providing rehabilitation services are all initiatives which we have found achieve this aim.
“Several of the recommendations of the White Paper are of key interest to Housing 21. For example, we have been supporting people to stay active and independent through our Live Active initiative. We have also demonstrated through our research the importance of good care at the end of life and welcome the proposed pilot of free care for people who are terminally ill.
“However, I am disappointed that the White Paper has missed the opportunity to address some of the key issues around the shortfalls in funding social care. For example, many people will share my frustration that there is no timescale for making these crucial changes. Older people and their carers and families need clarity now so that they can plan effectively.”