Government halves funding for Social Care workforce

Tue,4 April 2023
News Health & Social Care

The Government's decision to cut its promised Social Care workforce funding from £500m to £250m has been widely criticised.

On the 4th of April, the Department of Health and Social Care announced a new "package of measures" and the allocation of previously promised funding to improve the social care system.

The Government measures include:

  • Plans to speed up digitising social care records and better use of technology such as smart speakers and sensors.
  • An innovation and improvement unit to explore creative solutions for improving care.
  • £102 million over two years to help make small but significant adaptations that people need to remain at home.
  • A call for evidence in partnership with Skills for Care on a new care workforce pathway and funding for hundreds of thousands of training places.

Most organisations in the social care sector have criticised the government's allocation of funding promised in the 2021 Social Care whitepaper.

Sally Warren, director of policy at health thinktank The King's Fund, said the plans were a "dim shadow of the widescale reform to adult social care that this government came into office promising".

Mikey Erhardt, Campaigns and Policy Officer at DR UK, said:

"Today's announcement is a damning indictment of the government's current approach to social care. The decision to halve funding for the social care workforce will have long-term consequences for Disabled people when many of us drawing on social care experience the effects of inadequate funding.

We have a deficit of over 150,000 care workers, and the Government’s current plans won’t make a big enough difference.

It's very difficult to feel excited at the prospect of a digitised social care system or the use of smart speakers when the government fails to address the fundamentals, such as funding decent levels of social care and improving pay and conditions for the workforce. It is unlikely that any of today's announced measures will mean more and better care and support for Disabled people."