Adult social care in England: Sixth Report of Session 2014–15
Report, together with the formal minutes relating to the report
The challenge posed to society by the changing and growing need for adult social care is considerable. The need for such care is increasing while public funding is falling. The Government’s agenda to change and improve adult social care is rightly ambitious but achieving these ambitions will require unprecedented levels of coordinated working between government departments, between central and local government and across local authorities and health bodies. The Departments recognise the complexities and risks but we are not convinced that the responsible bodies will deliver on these ambitions and are concerned that they are raising expectations too high. We do welcome the determination of the Department for Communities and Local Government and the Department of Health to get a grip, and their recognition of their ultimate responsibility for the adult social care system as a whole. In this report we set out our concerns and make recommendations in three areas: for collaboration across all bodies involved in the care system; for bettern understanding of the capacity of the system to cope and for whether money really reaches the frontline services on which people depend; and for the Government’s oversight arrangements to reflect the overriding importance of quality of care in a sector where up to 220,000 workers earn less than the minimum wage and around one third of the workforce are on zero-hour contracts.