2 April 2014

ADASS welcomed today's report* from the King’s Fund as "an important contribution to what is fast becoming a major and continuing national debate." According to President Sandie Keene “Although only an interim report, it is in the company of several other key documents recently published all pointing out the current inadequate and unsustainable health and social care funding model and suggesting  a new governance for health and social care services. Today's report asks important questions which may assist the development of a longer term solution."

According to ADASS, the detail of the report will have to be subject to a detailed submission to the Barker Commission’s latter stages. However, Mrs Keene said that, of the broader proposals "we first need further evidence that additional integration between the two services will provide the cost savings that some think it will. Integration alone will not address the key issues of equity and sustainability but is an important driver for change.

"In this regard, we shall need to look closely at the way the Pioneer Programmes are developing, and how well integrated, but not combined, services can achieve the important end of making the health and social care experience better for our citizens.

"On top of that," she went on, "the Health and Wellbeing Boards, in which so much faith has been put recently, really do need to develop and be the robust, strategic tools that the closer interweaving of our services will require. These are issues which, perhaps, can be examined during the second stage of the Barker Commission’s deliberations."

Mrs Keene praised the report  for grasping the nettle of the need for additional funding as well as transformation. "It has become an established reality over the past year – evidenced by our budget survey, and the surveys of others from the voluntary sector – that adult social care is increasingly becoming unable to meet the needs of many of our citizens.

"Satisfaction levels are high, but there are far too many, and growing, examples of where services are being  restricted to those with higher needs for the reality to be ignored any longer. By beginning to look bravely at alternative funding streams, Barker, has done a significant service in raising the debate and actively seeking the solutions we need" she said.

ENDS

For further information contact:

Sandie Keene, ADASS President, 01132 478700

Drew Clode, ADASS Policy/Media Adviser, 020 8348 5023/07976 83775

* King’s Fund, April 2014


Editorial Note

The Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS) represents directors and senior managers of adult social services departments in English local authorities. Directors (DASSs) have statutory responsibilities for the social care of older people, adults with disabilities and adults with mental health needs.

In many authorities ADASS members will also share a number of responsibilities for the provision and/or commissioning of housing, leisure, libraries, culture, and community safety on behalf of their councils. More than a third of DASSs are also the statutory director of children’s services for their authority.

A personal budget is a clear, upfront amount of funding from adult social care which individuals can spend on the services and support they need to help them live more independently. It can be used to buy services from both the council and other providers, mixing and matching what’s available from different organisations.

Anyone aged 18 or over who is eligible for social care support can have a personal budget - but it is down to individuals whether they manage their budget themselves or whether someone else does this on their behalf.


KEY FACTS FROM THE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH SURVEY OF ADULT SOCIAL CARE 2012/13

  • 28 per cent of respondents reported their quality of life was so good, it could not be better, or very good (up 1 percentage point from 2011-12). 31 per cent reported it was good (the same as 2011-12) and 30 per cent reported it was “alright” – down one per cent from the previous year. However, 7 per cent reported their quality of life was bad, and the remaining 3 per cent reported their quality of their life was very bad or so bad, it could not be worse, both of which are unchanged from 2011-12.
  • The average score for the social care-related quality of life was 18.8 (compared to 18.7 in 2011-12) out of a maximum possible score of 24. This is a composite measure calculated using a combination of questions which cover 8 different outcome domains relating to quality of life.
  • 64 per cent of service users who responded said they were extremely or very satisfied with the care and support services they receive (up from 63 per cent in 2011-12) and 26 per cent said they were quite satisfied, down 1 per cent from 2011-12). However, 6 per cent said they were neither satisfied nor dissatisfied, and the remaining 4 per cent said they were dissatisfied, both of these figures are unchanged from the previous year.
  • 32 per cent reported they have as much control as they want over their daily life (up 2 per cent from 2011-12) and 44 per cent reported they have adequate control (down one per cent from 2011-12). 20 per cent reported they have some control but not enough, and 5 per cent reported they have no control; both these figures are the same as 2011-12.
  • 67,755 out of a sample of 173,630 recipients of care and social care services responded to the survey, which is a response rate of 39 per cent (down 1 percentage point from 2011-12). However, both the number of respondents and sample size are greater than in 2011-12 (65,600 and 164,300 respectively).