Latest Public Sector News

09.07.14

Changes to Better Care Fund undermine the whole scheme – Solace

Changes to the Better Care Fund (BCF) undermine the original, localist ambitions of the fund and will result in cuts to vital adult social care services.

This is according to Graeme McDonald, director of Solace, who stated that by creating a national programme office – requiring health providers to submit a round of detailed plans and setting a crude national target – the government has created unnecessary layers of bureaucracy.

Following a review, changes to the government's £3.8bn fund mean that up to £400m will be used to effectively ‘compensate’ acute hospital trusts if the local plans fail to cut admissions – a key concern of hospitals, who are seeing large amounts of funding shifted into the BCF.

But McDonald states: “These changes will also reverse progress toward better care for vulnerable, often elderly people. This will mean substantially reduced investment in the community and social care needed to keep people healthy and independent.

“Further reductions in already stretched adult social care spending and services are now increasingly likely. The BCF was also supposed to provide the resources needed to implement the government’s new Care Act. As such, these welcome changes could be put at risk.”

The Solace director concluded by that the government is at risk of undermining a policy which is “critical” to achieving a fair, sustainable health and care system.

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

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