LGA RESPONDS TO NHS CHIEF EXECUTIVE SIMON STEVENS’ SPEECH
Responding to NHS Chief Executive Simon Stevens’ speech to the NHS Providers conference, Cllr Izzi Seccombe, Chairman of the Local Government Association’s Community Wellbeing Board, said:
“There cannot be a sustainable NHS without a sustainable adult social care system.
“Adult social care services provide invaluable care and support for older and disabled people.
“Investing in social care keeps people out of hospital and living independent, dignified lives at home and in the community. It is the single best investment to alleviate pressure on our vital NHS services.
“Social care services face an annual funding gap of £2.3 billion by 2020. Councils have long-argued that it is a false economy to pump money into the NHS whilst leaving social care chronically underfunded.
“While local government will have managed reductions to its core funding from central government totalling £16 billion between 2010 and 2020, we estimate that NHS spending will have increased by just under £20 billion over the same period.
“As a nation we urgently need to recognise the importance of adult social care and prevention of poor health. We need to shift perceptions and make adult social care just as important in the public eye and within government as the NHS.
“The Government should use this month’s Autumn Budget to set out how it plans to tackle the crisis in adult social care as well as the NHS to deliver a long-term sustainable solution that works for adults of all ages.
“We are also calling on the Government to reverse the planned cuts to councils’ public health budgets and renew its commitment to prevention as a fundamental priority of its health policy.”