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Social care funding increase welcomed but councillor warns more is needed

03 October 2018

Councillor Iftikhar Ahmed.

We have welcomed the government's announcement of extra funding for social care but warned that more money is needed to avert a future crisis.

Our Cabinet Member for Adult Care, Councillor Iftikhar Ahmed, said the government's intended cash injection, announced this week, was a step in the right direction but added that only a long-term funding solution would fix the funding gap.

The £240 million national increase, announced by the Health Secretary Matt Hancock MP, will ease pressures on the social care system by preventing unnecessary hospital admissions and freeing up much needed beds. Councillor Ahmed said he was urgently seeking clarification on how much of the £240 million Rochdale would be receiving.

It follows a recent estimate by the Local Government Association (LGA), who also campaigned on the issue, that adult social services provided by councils face a national annual funding gap of £3.5 billion by 2025.

'More is needed to ensure a long-term solution is found for the social care crisis'

Locally, we have seen nearly £200 million of government cuts in the last 8 years, with more to follow.

Councillor Ahmed has consistently campaigned for more investment in social care, repeatedly warning of a winter crisis unless the government stumped up more cash. He said: "This a small step forward, but more is needed to ensure a long-term solution is found for the social care crisis.

I am pleased the government has finally listened to my call for more money, but we can't keep tinkering at the edges with these one off announcements. I will be seeking more details, as it is vital that the cash is ring-fenced to ensure our excellent adult care department can target resources where they are most needed."