Nearly two thirds of MPs believe that the budget for social care should be raised by £7 billion per year over the next two years, according to a new survey.
Publishing the findings today, Health for Care, a coalition of 15 health organisations led by the NHS Confederation, warned that the social care system needs “urgent and radical reform and significant investment” and called on the government to “rapidly deliver” on its manifesto pledge to transform the struggling sector.
The study found that over three quarters of MPs believe the budget for social care should be raised. This includes almost two thirds who believe that it should be increased by £7 billion a year and almost a quarter who believe the increase should be more than this.
Meanwhile, three quarters of Conservative councillors, and almost half of all MPs think that social care should be funded by a new collective funding mechanism.
Results of the survey, of 96 MPs and 520 councillors in England between November 25 and December 15, come ahead of tomorrow’s 2021 Budget.
The study shows strong support for recommendations made by the Health and Social Care Select Committee in October.
Danny Mortimer, chair of the coalition and chief executive of the NHS Confederation, said: “Decades of delay and inertia have left the social care system chronically underfunded and in desperate need of reform.
“As we slowly and cautiously ease out of the COVID emergency we cannot delay this a moment longer. It is clear that the tragedy of Covid-19 has helped to cement a consensus in both parliament and local government that urgent action is needed to fix social care. There is also clear cross-party support for additional resources for the sector and the need long term financial and workforce plan.
“The NHS and social care work side by side, when one service does not work, the other suffers, and the pandemic has served to shine a stark light on how fragile and severely under-resourced the country’s social care system has become.
“We are now calling on the Government to commit to deliver both significant investment and concrete legislative proposals which give social care the future facing reform it so badly needs.”
Miriam Deakin, director of policy and strategy at NHS Providers, said: “These poll findings show cross party support from local politicians to place social care on a sustainable footing, which is really encouraging to see.
“COVID-19 has highlighted just how underfunded the social care sector has been for too long, despite this government’s pledges for reform.
“The NHS and social care are two sides of the same coin. The NHS relies on a stable social care system to help people remain well and independent. We look forward to the proposals government has committed to bring forward on social care later this year.”