Social care provides care, support, and safeguards for those people in our communities who have the highest level of need and for their carers. Social care has value in its own right in transforming lives as well as being critical for the sustainability of the NHS. The inter-dependency of health and social care is now well recognised.
Nearly two million people rely on these essential services and around 6.5 million carers support people alongside and beyond the formal social care sector.
The value of adult social care to the economy should not be underestimated. The total direct, indirect and induced value of the adult social care sector in the UK is estimated to be a £46.2 billion contribution to the national economy and 2.6m jobs.2 It is detrimental to both the economy and to the health and wellbeing of individuals to have to give up employment to provide care because it cannot be provided otherwise
ADASS has consistently demonstrated its commitment to work collaboratively with the NHS at local, regional, and national levels for the benefit of local people, particularly older and disabled people. The new financial settlement for the NHS is the largest single increase for any public service in recent times outside of the spending review. How the NHS uses this money has profound implications for the wellbeing of our populations and for adult social care, offering potential opportunities but also the risk of exacerbating existing local authority budget pressures. What the Plan says about the integration of health and social care is also a vital concern. So the importance of full and effective engagement by ADASS in the process cannot be over-stated.
Drawing on previous ADASS lines and positions on a variety of issues to do with the NHS, including the ‘Distinctive, Valued, Personal’ document and the Green Paper statement, the following elements in the below document are the basis for ADASS’s ‘asks’ of the Plan’s contents, and our ‘offer’ of support: