A new independent commission will be established to advise the Government on the future funding of long-term care and the NHS will be reformed to improve patient outcomes, Health Secretary Andrew Lansley announced today.
Health Secretary Andrew Lansley said, “This document sets out a clear message to the NHS. That our united vision is for a healthcare system which achieves outcomes that are amongst the best in the world, and free from day-to-day political interference.
“We will cut bureaucracy and hand back power to clinicians and patients to ensure they are at the forefront of decision making about NHS services. The proposals will drive up standards of care, eliminate waste and lead to better outcomes that improve the health of the nation.”
Today’s coalition announcement sets out how the Government will push forward reform of social care. The Government will:
- establish an independent commission on the funding of long-term care, to report within a year;
- break down barriers between health and social care funding to incentivise preventative action;
- extend the greater roll-out of personal budgets to both older and disabled people and carers to give more control and purchasing power; and
- increase direct payments to carers and better community-based provision to improve access to respite care.
Care Services Minister Paul Burstow said, “Urgent reform of the social care system is at the top of our agenda. The current system is unsustainable - it cannot go on as it is. Our first step to reform is to establish an independent commission.
“The Commission on Long Term Care will be tasked with delivering a sustainable settlement, which is a fair partnership between the state and the individual. We’ll set out further details and the terms of reference soon.”
The Government has also today announced that it will not be commencing the provisions in the Personal Care at Home Act, 2010 relating to free care at home. However, the Government will be considering what more can be done on re-ablement and carers' breaks in the light of available resources.