Disabled care home residents evicted in charity’s dispute with councils | Social care | The Guardian

This is how it is and has been for many years,

“Social care desperately needs long-term investment and we cannot continue like this,” said Jackie O’Sullivan, Mencap’s director of communication, advocacy and activism. “We are relying on the goodwill of good people for the sector to stay afloat and it’s clear that the system is broken.”

One physically disabled Leonard Cheshire resident said he had felt trapped in the middle of a game of hardball between the charity and his council funder after being told by his care home manager last month that he faced eviction.

Keith Harris, 47, who is paralysed from the neck down and requires a 24-hour care presence, said he blamed persistent central government underfunding of social care for his predicament. “There needs to be an NHS level of funding for social care; it needs to be treated like a national treasure too,” he said.

Unfortunately, due to years and years of Government underfunding of Local Authorities, LAs, these LAs are unable to funding Social Care to the degree that is necessary.

LAs have been deliberately been severely underfunded by Conservative Government since 2010 through their use of austerity cuts to the Government grants to LAs and is still doing so.

But Social Care has been underfunded for many years previously by all Governments because it is not held in anywhere near the same esteem as the NHS when it should always have been. Also, unlike the NHS, it is not free at the point of delivery, although the full cost of social care is not charged to persons who have savings of less than £23250. Over £23000 persons in need of care have to fully fund their own need of social care, until their savings are reduced to below £23250.

Why should there be this discriminationfor those in need of social care are generally persons who can least afford any contributions, which can be and most likely are in excess of £100 per week. Although the weekly charge can be reduced by applying Disability Related Expenses, (DREs) when a financial assessment is conducted.

However, if the social care can be deemed as nursing health care then that particular part of social care can be fully funded by the relevant health area and an assessment will be done by the local Continuing Health Care , (CHC). So, dependent on the Assessment of Needs done by both Social Care on behalf of LAs and CHC on behalf of the NHS, the care package could be fully funded by Social Care or the NHS, or alternatively jointly funded by Social Care and NHS dependent on the split of Social Care and NHS care in the respective care packages.

So, even further discrimination, as some conditions causing a need for a care package are deemed to be health related and some social care related. This just further complicates a system which is already so complex and so much time is spent finding out who should pay for what, which is expensive use of staff time and could delay the start of commencing a care package, although the Care Act 2014 does state it should not. But, in many cases the Care Act is not fully following the Care Act unless legally instructed to do so, by cases being submitted to the Health and Social Care Ombudsman or though a Judical Review, but that again will delay the commencement of the care package. But submission can’t be made to the Ombudsmans until a Formal Compliant has been made and 12 weeks have elapsed from doing so. With Judical reviews this is even more difficult and legal costs could be involved and many persons wishing to have a Judical review will not be able to afford to do so and will therefore need either Legal Aid to do so, which is far from easy to obtain, or receive the legal service on a ‘win no pay’ basis, but trying to obtain there services is also not easy as many Legal firms are only willing to take on these cases where it is virtually certain a win will be successful.as if the case is lost the person bringing the review will not only have to pay their own costs but, more than likely, those of the defending party. If the case is won then the costs of the person bringing the review will be taken from the award given.

No wonder there is such a massive crisis in social care, through years and years of Government underfunding, but the lack of required social care also increases the demand on the NHS as insufficient social care not only causes health deteriorations in the person in need of care, but also their other family members who will also be undergoing great stress and will be trying to provide care, which they are no longer, really able to do, as no family applies for social care if the could provide it themselves, as providing care seriously damages the health of other family members.

This is all down to UK Governments not taking on its responsibilities for fully funding social care and in doing so social care is not really availableas it should be and needs to be.

But, the lack of funding is not only causing lack of funding for care packages, but the funding is also causing a severe defficiency in the numbers of persons willing to work in social care due to the abysmal remunerations they recieve for the work they do, their terms of employmentand working conditions and much more.

For care workers also need to recieve sufficient reimbursement of travel expenses, full holiday and sick pay and much more. Care workers are just as necessary as all workers in the NHS and should be paid accordingly, as many, only recieve the National Living Wage or just above. which in reallity is nowhere near a living wage in this current state of the cost of living in the UK. To make it a real living wage for the work done, care workers should be on at least £14/15 per hour and not the less than £10 they currently receive.

If social care is not, at last fully sufficiently funded then this will not only eventually lead to the total demise of social care in the UK, but could well be, also the total demise of the NHS as well.

So, Sunak and Hunt, listen for once in your lives and ensure social care if sufficiently funded, not, maybe, sometime in the future, but now as time is not on our side, otherwise the demise of social care will be total and most, if not all persons in need of social care will no longer be around and this is for both children and adults, not only the elderly, which is what most people consider are the only persons needing social care, for it is far from it. Children and other adults may not be in residential or nursing care homes, but receive or should recieve social care through home care, respite, supported living and Hospices, etc.

Social Care needs sufficient funding now not just in the future, give it before it is too late.

 

Source: Disabled care home residents evicted in charity’s dispute with councils | Social care | The Guardian

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