£ 870k extra funding for social care
AROUND £ 870,000 in extra funding will be made available to shore up Solihull’s stretched social care services.
Ministers had announced last month that they would be releasing an additional £ 240 million to help councils cope with extra demand over the winter, and in turn ease the intense pressure on the NHS.
It has been confirmed that a total of £ 870,356 had been allocated to Solihull Council.
Next week, Councillor Karen Grinsell, cabinet member for adult social care and health, will be updated on plans to start spending the one- off grant “as quickly as possible.”
A report to be considered at Monday night’s decision session outlines proposals to pump the funding into a number of initiatives, designed to prevent bed blocking and free up space on hospital wards.
While the full terms and conditions of the grant had not been confirmed at the time the document was drafted, officers have used the letter sent by the Department for Health and Social Care as a basis for their plans.
Caroline Potter, the council’s finance manager for adult care and support, said: “Officers have also engaged with the market about how resources can be mobilised quickly and effectively, to ensure that proposals put forward are realistic and that the local care market is ready to deliver what is needed.”
Given that the six- figure sum is a one- off, the initiatives have been designed so that they won’t add to demand once the money has run out.
Health Secretary Matt Hancock had said the extra funding would “free up those vital hospital beds, and help people who really need it, get the hospital care they need”.
Although there have been concerns that, without underlying reform, Westminster’s extra injections of cash were putting a sticking plaster on the issue.
Last month, the charity Age UK said that “governments allow social care to teeter on the brink, only to bail it out with an emergency hand out – just enough to prevent total national collapse but no more”.
have also engaged with the market about how resources can be mobilised quickly. CAROLINE POTTER
Councillor Karen Grinsell