Department of Health and Social Care written question – answered on 6th February 2019.

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Photo of Ben Bradley Ben Bradley Conservative, Mansfield

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, with reference to the report entitled Room to Manoeuvre, published by Arthritis Research, what assessment he has made of the implications for his policies of the recommendations made in that report.

Photo of Caroline Dinenage Caroline Dinenage Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)

We know that aids and adaptations can greatly enhance the quality of life of people with arthritis, in addition to supporting them to be as independent as possible in their own homes. The ‘Room to Manoeuvre’ report highlights their importance and identifies areas for improvement.

The Disabled Facilities Grant (DFG) supports older and disabled people, including those with arthritis, on low-incomes to adapt their homes to make them safe and suitable for their needs. Funding for the DFG had already more than doubled from £220 million in 2015-16 to £468 million in 2018-19. Autumn Budget 2018 announced an additional £55 million for 2018-19.

An independent review of the DFG - which assesses how the Grant is currently working and makes evidence-based recommendations on how it could change in the future – was published in December 2018. Together with the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government we are carefully considering the review’s findings.

The Government will also be publishing a Green Paper at the earliest opportunity to bring forward proposals to improve the social care system, and the role of housing will be a crucial part of considerations.

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