Frustrated care providers say a lack of action on funding means the number of older and vulnerable adults going without the care they need has shot up to 1.2m.
The State of Care report released today by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) reports that care homes are closing and homecare providers are handing back contracts because they cannot viably deliver them.
The Independent Care Group says the report cannot come as a surprise.
Chair Mike Padgham said: “Today’s report shows that the system is failing. We have 200,000 more people going without the care they need because homes are closing and homecare providers cannot deliver the service for the price being paid.
“In 2017 we have 1.2m of our most vulnerable people not getting the care they deserve to give them a proper quality of life with dignity, compassion and independence and that is a scandal.
“We need action to stop the crisis in staff recruitment – there are 90,000 social care staff vacancies – and to give staff proper reward for doing a tough, challenging job.
“We must address the funding of social care in this country as a matter of urgency or we face a real crisis. There is a real danger of a two-tier care system where people relying on publicly-funded care cannot get the care they need in their home town.”
The CQC report says there are 4,000 fewer nursing home beds than there were in 2015 and it concludes: “The future of care for older people and the adult care system is one of the greatest unresolved public policy issues of our time.”
Mr Padgham, who has twice written to the Prime Minister and the Minister responsible for social care, Jackie Doyle-Price, inviting them to visit the frontline of social care, said appeals for help were falling on deaf ears.
“We have been promised a consultation document on social care in the New Year, but that could easily be too little, too late given that the best we can hope for then are some proposals.
“The time for reports, Green Papers, White Papers, consultations and commissions is over – we need to see action, before it is too late.”