Wednesday 26th June 2013

Directors of adult social services have welcomed the promise of additional funds made in todays Spending Review announcements. But they have expressed concern at the potential adverse impact further reductions in overall local government might have.

According to ADASS President Sandie Keene: "The move towards closer work with the health service is entirely welcome, and recognises the developments already taking place. The decision to link health and social care funding so closely together in this announcement will have a positive impact in accelerating the changes we are making and acknowledges the role of social care in the delivery of effective health services, particularly for those people with long term conditions.

"However, she went on, social services for adults are deeply woven into the fabric of local government services. The benefits gained from closer integration with the services  provided by our health colleagues   and the consequent flow of funds from CCGs to adult care via the Health and Wellbeing boards - will be rendered less valuable if the intricate relationship with other local government services, such as children's, housing, leisure and culture many of which are managed by DASSs is threatened by severe downward pressures on local government spending as a whole.

We are fully aware of the demands that austerity is making on our national, financial and economic activity. But horse trading between priority areas for the most vulnerable in society is a grim spectacle and may not be the answer to the financial uncertainties we face. The impetus to see the provision and commissioning of care in a whole-system context is undermined if one part of the system itself is undermined.

We will need mature dialogue between local partners and the public to address what may continue to be deficits in the overall funding available.

She pledged ADASS, however, to continue to work closely with the local Government Association, NHS England and the Department of Health in trying to ensure that todays Treasury announcement can be implemented in a way which maximises the quality and quantity of care services to older people, people with physical or learning disabilities, and mental health issues.

ENDS

For further information contact:
Sandie Keene, ADASS President, 01132 478700
Drew Clode, ADASS Policy/Press Adviser, 020 8348 5023/07976 837755

Portraits of Sandie Keene available on request
Her profile can be read at http://alturl.com/a4ua4

Editorial Notes

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. Nearly a third of DASSs are also the statutory director of childrens services for their authority.

The Department of Health survey of adult social care 2010/2011 showed that:

* 62% of service users who responded said that they were extremely or very satisfied with the care and support services they receive.

* 28% said they were quite satisfied, 7% said they were neither satisfied nor dissatisfied and the remaining 3% said they were dissatisfied.

* 26% reported their quality of life was so good, it could not be better or very good.

* 31% reported it was good, and

* 33% reported it was alright.

* 10% reported their quality of life was either bad, very bad or so bad it could not be worse

See full results here.