NHS Providers' response to new Skills for Care report
13 October 2021
Responding to the new Skills for Care report, deputy chief executive of NHS Providers, Saffron Cordery, said:
"The social care sector is facing a 'perfect storm' of longstanding workforce and funding issues, compounded by the impact of COVID-19.
"Social care staff have worked incredibly hard throughout the pandemic and should be rewarded for their efforts, as Skills for Care's annual report recommends. Their vital work to keep people well and independent in the community is essential not only for individuals but also for the effective functioning of the health and care system.
"This report highlights the sector's recruitment and retention crisis, which trust leaders tell us is impacting on whether patients can leave hospital in a timely way when they are medically fit to access the support and rehabilitation they need at home or in other community settings.
"These delays would be extremely concerning at any time. But given the multiple pressures the health and care sector faces as we head into winter – including the need to tackle the care backlogs and huge demand for urgent and emergency services – it's an even greater issue.
"The report also highlights that social care workers from a Black, Asian or minority ethnicity make up 21% of the total workforce with 82% female and 27% aged 55 and over. We strongly support Skills For Care's recommendation that they should be rewarded fairly and that we should embrace the opportunity to make social care an employer for all.
"The NHS and social care work closely together to deliver for patients. While the recently announced funding increase for social care and introduction of a cap on lifetime care costs are a welcome starting point, the government's upcoming adult social care white paper and the spending review must go further to truly reform the social care system.
"We urge the government to deliver on its commitment to place vital social care services onto a sustainable financial footing so people receive the right care in the right setting."