Inequalities in Dementia Services — [Christina Rees in the Chair]

Part of Backbench Business – in Westminster Hall at 1:02 pm on 16 May 2024.

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Photo of Andrew Gwynne Andrew Gwynne Shadow Minister (Social Care) 1:02, 16 May 2024

I would certainly hope and expect so. The way we are going to deal with the national care service is not to create a big, monolithic organisation to rival the NHS as some kind of super-organisation employing lots of people. The NCS will be about the centre setting out a clear national direction of how we deal with the challenges of social care: what the pay, terms and conditions of the workforce should be, and what the outcomes should be for people drawing on social care services. That strong centre sets out the “what”. The “how” has to be determined locally, because what works in Oldham will not work in Romford. There will be best practice in Oldham, which will transfer over and can be upscaled to Halifax, Lewes or Romford. That is also a job of the centre—to promote that best practice and what works, encouraging other authorities to do that—but the funding challenges require an integrated approach, and I saw at first hand how that could work in my own local authority.

For a very small period of time, now unpicked by the latest round of structural changes, Tameside council was also the clinical commissioning group for Tameside and Glossop. By bringing the local authority and the CCG together under a single leadership with a single budget, some really smart decisions were made on dealing with adult social care. I know what integration looks like, I know it works, and I know how we can get better use of the public pound, by stripping out some of the duplication.