Futures Forum: 'Let's get some momentum back into care for older people' - ADASS

Association of Directors of Adult Social Services
Date: Monday June 13th, 2011
Embargo: Immediate

In response to publication today of the Governments Futures Forum report, ADASS President Peter Hay said:

"There were many sceptical voices when the Futures Forum was announced. Many thought it would do nothing: that it would be compliant and silent

"Having been a member and sat through its work, I think we tried hard to listen, and in so doing moved our own positions, coming towards a report that represents largely a collective view. Given that an integrated system is everyone's goal, this unanimity is a really good starting point.

"Of course, what matters is what happens next and how the Government responds. We shall watch that with interest.

"What also matters is getting some momentum back into the development of new approaches in areas like the care of the elderly where everyone agrees a new approach is needed. The enthusiasm of the 132 early implementers of health and wellbeing boards will soon need to show something has changed.

"I was especially encouraged throughout  the listening exercise to hear many call for major changes to improve care to older people. This exercise was never going to design the new care system that this Government is already committed to. However, the role of those Boards and the focus on integrated care outside of hospital settings are the foundations on which social care reform could be built.

"We hope that the focus of the NHS will soon move towards looking at how to build social care in ways that allow it to play the role that many in the NHS envisage. Last week, a joint seminar mounted by the ADASS and the British Geriatric Society  held out the promise of the energetic changes that come from professional and clinical alliances.

"We await what will no doubt be more discussion when Government responds. Let's also get ahead by thinking how we will use the new systems to show changes where we know theyre needed. We have made a start on the ground and in councils where we have also said we are ready to be leaders in an integrated system. Let's be prepared to show that we are well and truly up for it!"

ENDS

For further information, contact:
Peter Hay, President, ADASS, 0121 303 2992
Drew Clode, ADASS Policy/Pres Adviser, 020 8348 5023/07976 837755

Pictures of Peter Hay available on request.