New analysis has revealed that there is a projected £907 million funding gap in London Council budgets by 2018 due to social care pressures.
Indeed Brent’s own projections show that there is a £45 million gap due to care pressures by 2020. The projections are accurately mapped out and take into consideration factors such as, cuts to Council budgets, the rise in the elderly population, the fact that younger and working age disabled people are living longer with long-term conditions too.
The one element where there is cost uncertainty is in charges. Social care provision is means-tested and with rising levels of poverty and a squeeze on other disability and housing benefits, we may find that more will be provided with free or heavily subsidised services because of the nature of means-testing.
London Councils currently spend a third of their budgets on social care. The Local Government Association (LGA) in a separate report in June last year warned that without reform, the public can expect a cut of 90% of funding in popular services such as libraries and leisure centres.
Indeed in the first budget of the current Council administration the two significant areas of overspend and pressure on top of the front loaded cuts to Brent Council were adult social care and children in care. Unfortunately this received about zero attention though.
The report provides a great case for wholesale health and social care integration and more support to local authorities. You can read the full report here LINK