Fair access to care services (FACS): prioritising eligibility for care and support

The social care and NHS policy context - Changes in policy, terminology, practice and resourcing since 2010



Policy change has often been accompanied by new terminology.


Resources for care and support

The effects of the economic downturn have tended to outweigh other factors in the thinking of many in central and local government. The Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS) calculates that between April 2011 and March 2013, £1.89 billion was removed from local authority social services budgets. While all authorities have experienced significant resource constraints, there are wide variations in how they are managing the consequences. Some have adopted a ‘retrenchment’ approach, applying eligibility criteria more strictly, reducing levels of support to individuals, withdrawing services and increasing charges. Others have preferred to look at alternative ways to use the resources they have available, working with the NHS to transform commissioned services, investing in early intervention and prevention to reduce demand for higher-dependency care and support, and working with voluntary and community sector bodies and with a wider range of commercial and private sector services to spread scarce resources further.


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