Only a few days to go: We’re raising £25,000 to keep TheyWorkForYou running and make sure people across the UK can hold their elected representatives to account.

Donate to our crowdfunder

Social Care - Statement

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 2:12 pm on 7th December 2017.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Lord O'Shaughnessy Lord O'Shaughnessy The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Health 2:12 pm, 7th December 2017

Again, I thank the noble Baroness for those questions. I will try to deal with them in order. As I set out in the repeat of the Statement, there will be a parallel programme for working age adults. It is important to note that that feeds into the same inter-ministerial group. I emphasise that in terms of its profile in the overall work programme. It is of course separate from social care for older people, but it is a parallel programme.

The noble Baroness is quite right about the need to build consensus. We all know how much we need sustainable reform in this sector. Governments of all hues have tried it. We really do need to get there now. I cannot give her timings at this point of course, but it is becoming urgent as our population changes.

I completely agree with the noble Baroness on carers. I pay tribute to those carers of all ages, including young ones, who take on extraordinary responsibilities and dedicate their lives to caring for others. It is an amazing thing to do. I recognise her frustrations at the delay. I hope contributing to the Green Paper should not involve much additional work, although inevitably there will need to be some updating. As I said, I will write to noble Lords to give more details about the carers action plan, which is intended to be a bridge between now and the consequences of the Green Paper and the options it lays out.

Finally, we do not agree, as the noble Baroness knows, that there is a need for such a body on health and social care. She is of course right about integration. That is why metro mayors, such as the one in Manchester, are taking on these combined responsibilities. It is why integration is built into the better care fund. This is a direction we need to push down to provide proper, holistic, wraparound care for older people.