NHS England calls for reform: SCIE response

05 July 2020

Plans to adequately fund the social care sector need to be in place within a year, the head of NHS England Sir Simon Stevens has said. Kathryn Smith, Chief Executive of the Social Care Institute for Excellence says:

Sir Simon is right to say that the resilience of the adult social care system has been under the spotlight during the lockdown and COVID-19 crisis. Sir Simon says it’s important to resource and reform care and support; and it’s encouraging that the Department of Health and Social Care are keen on reform as well. It’s true that social care needs proper funding and that the workforce needs to be paid properly and have the status that they don’t always enjoy. But our vision is also of a society where care and support maximises people’s choices and enables them to live a healthy, safe, and fulfilling life. They can achieve this by being active members of their communities.

Kathryn Smith continues

It’s vital that the general public and policy makers don’t see social care as simply taking place in care homes, even though they play a key role. Take strength-based approaches. These look at people’s assets and not their deficits. They are outcomes-led so that services fit around what people want rather than being commissioned prescriptively from on high. And as we enter the fifth national Co-production Week tomorrow, it’s important to celebrate the role that users of services and carers play in shaping the services that they use. Yes, funding is vital, but so is the role of citizens contributing to their communities so that really exciting reform can happen so that the high quality social care Sir Simon speaks of can truly occur.

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