Care Lobby 2012

Londra - The House of Parliament e il Big Ben
Today there will be a lobby and representation made to Parliament by the Care and Support Alliance – which is an umbrella organisation of a number of charities and representative groups for people with disabilities, illnesses and their carers.

The Care and Support Alliance is campaigning to change the current system of care which exists, claiming there is a ‘care crisis’ which needs fixing and is pushing the government to act on Dilnot’s proposals to change the system of funding for social care.

There is much that needs to be changed – not least the funding of care which at the moment is very dependent on location. It is a postcode lottery of funding in every sense of the word with different local authorities having very different systems which creates a very extrinsic ‘unfairness’.

But there is  more that needs to be changed than just creating a more equitable national system of payments for care. There is much about the way care is delivered, commissioned and organised that needs changing too.

There needs to be an improvement not just of the quality of care that is delivered but the quality of support that is offered to families of people who have care needs. While the government can have as many meetings about improving dignity in care as they like, these reports will all sound the same unless they do more to change the fundamental way that services are financed and delivered. Currently pushing costs between health and social care is detrimental to those who need support from both and until there is both better integration of budgets and greater attention to the fundamental needs of

I am very much in support of the Lobby today. For those who are not able to take part in person (like me, as I’ll be at work), there are ways to take part and show support online both on Facebook and Twitter.

Everyone needs to push on this point. We have to actively engage with the government to show them how much this matters and how much it matters that social care is important as a political issue. Health and Social Care are intrinsically connected and money pushed between one and the other without proper systems will cost more to both but not much in money, in quality and length of life, in stress and distress to those who need care and those who provide it.

The government has to act. Please join the Lobby or the #Twobby to make our voices heard together.

photo: Gengish/Flickr

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One thought on “Care Lobby 2012

  1. A very thought-provoking and “fair” assessment of the state of play in health and social care. I do think there is a fundamental tension between the “localism” emphasis of Big Society and the need for “fairness” across a national health and social care system… but that is a separate debate.

    Far more importantly today, I see a huge opportunity for politicians of ALL parties to respond to the “#twobbly” initiative.

    I see wonderful things happening in our health and social care systems but also a fundamental need for culture change so that the best practice can flourish everywhere. Organisations will thrive with influential, enabling leadership rather than a top-down “blame” culture; reaching out and working with others rather than perpetuating silo thinking.

    Lots of scope for co-production and real involvement of “experts by experience”. A culture enabling innovation, flair, compassion in EVERY encounter… I could go on!

    The phrase that struck a real chord with me was: “Currently pushing costs between health and social care is detrimental to those who need support from both” and the consequent LOSE:LOSE outcomes. Inefficiency within the system; misery for service users and carers.

    This brings back horrendous memories of our family’s brush with so called “Continuing Care”… the nightmare of health and social care fighting over funding for our relative’s care through a Continuing Care Assessment (ie trying to pass the buck, NOT fighting to pick up the tab!).

    I remember long meetings with piles of paperwork and five people sitting round the table discussing humiliating “domains” to establish exactly HOW bad this woman, who was clearly dying, was under each category. I remember the anger and frustration, thinking the system had lost the plot somewhere and how much better it would be if these resources were directed at providing the actual care….

    For a truly person-centred approach (which all parties claim to support), ALL sectors need to work very closely together. Funding needs to reward collaboration rather than competition. After all, if you needed support for a long-term health condition, would you want to struggle to understand the boundaries between different agencies and departments or would you want a joined-up service?

    Yes, lots of opportunities today. Will the powers that be listen?

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