Latest Public Sector News

23.08.12

£300m social care savings available through efficient assessment

Councils could save over £300m each year if they carried out clinical assessments for social care more effectively, the Audit Commission has stated.

A new report demonstrates that some councils conduct a similar number of reviews at the same quality but more cheaply. Identifying and eliminating the causes of the differences in cost could save a significant amount, which could then be used to fund care for thousands more elderly people.

The Local Government Association has suggested that the efficiency savings highlighted would not be enough to offset the shortfall of billions of pounds in care budgets.

Councils undertake assessments to identify what level of assistance people with social care needs require. In 2010/11, councils in England carried out around 1.8m assessments, costing £2.2bn.

The Audit Commission reported that £182m savings were available if councils reduced their assessment costs to the median for councils of similar type and circumstances. And reducing spend on assessments to 10% of the social care budget at all councils could save £312m annually.

The report suggests that councils can reduce their spending on assessments and reviews by redesigning the care pathway to provide information at an early stage to reduce the potential demand for formal assessments,­ reducing overheads by streamlining the administration supporting assessments and reviews and­ reviewing the grade mix of staff providing assessments and reviews.

Audit Commission managing director Andy McKeon said: “Assessments and reviews are a crucial element of social care, enabling individuals’ needs to be properly identified and met.

“However, our evidence suggests that councils can spend less and still do an excellent job in helping people receive the care that they need.

“As councils struggle to meet the needs of a growing older population with less cash, any opportunity to save money and redirect it into care should be pursued enthusiastically.”

The report is at: www.audit-commission.gov.uk/sitecollectiondocuments/downloads/20120823VFMassessmentsreviews.pdf

Tell us what you think – have your say below, or email us directly at opinion@publicsectorexecutive.com

Comments

There are no comments. Why not be the first?

Add your comment

 

related

public sector executive tv

more videos >

last word

Prevention: Investing for the future

Prevention: Investing for the future

Rob Whiteman, CEO at the Chartered Institute of Public Finance (CIPFA), discusses the benefits of long-term preventative investment. Rising demand, reducing resource – this has been the r more > more last word articles >

public sector focus

View all News

comment

Peter Kyle MP: It’s time to say thank you this Public Service Day

21/06/2019Peter Kyle MP: It’s time to say thank you this Public Service Day

Taking time to say thank you is one of the hidden pillars of a society. Bei... more >
How community-led initiatives can help save the housing shortage

19/06/2019How community-led initiatives can help save the housing shortage

Tom Chance, director at the National Community Land Trust Network, argues t... more >

interviews

Artificial intelligence: the devil is in the data

17/12/2018Artificial intelligence: the devil is in the data

It’s no secret that the public sector and its service providers need ... more >

the raven's daily blog

Northern Powerhouse Partner aims to connect the North once again

02/09/2019Northern Powerhouse Partner aims to connect the North once again

In February this year, official Northern Powerhouse Partner, Cognitive Publishing, delivered EvoNorth 2019.  The two day event was designed to amplify and highlight futur... more >
read more blog posts from 'the raven' >

editor's comment

25/10/2017Take a moment to celebrate

Devolution, restructuring and widespread service reform: from a journalist’s perspective, it’s never been a more exciting time to report on the public sector. That’s why I could not be more thrilled to be taking over the reins at PSE at this key juncture. There could not be a feature that more perfectly encapsulates this feeling of imminent change than the article James Palmer, mayor of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, has penned for us on p28. In it, he highlights... read more >