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Growing Old - Care in Crisis?
Agincare has recently taken part in filming with the ITN team for the programme ‘Tonight’ with the aim of highlighting the funding issues facing the social care sector.
It also reflects the fantastic work undertaken by care workers, how much this care means to people receiving services and also how the lack of funding can impact these groups. We comment on how, as a business, we have decided not to bid for many new contracts with councils where the price they are willing to pay for care is below that we feel required to deliver a reliable and quality service.
Essential social care is provided to thousands of people across the country every day and, regardless of the companies behind the provision of this, we need care to operate on a sustainable and solid framework, which can support quality and an appropriately rewarded workforce. Even with adequate funding the care of vulnerable people within financial and workforce pressures is always difficult. In our home care company alone the daily challenges of planning and delivering over 45,000 separate home care visits every week to people with increasing high and changeable needs means that things do go wrong at times, despite our teams being totally committed to quality, communication and constant improvement of our services. These are good people who care but are becoming demoralised by the difficulties they face every day, together with the problems in trying to attract new people who care into the sector.
As Mel (pictured), one of our Weymouth Care Workers who has been with us for 15 years, said when she appeared on Good Morning Britain earlier today: 10 years ago most of her visits would have been for one hour or more and now these visits are nearly all just half an hour. This creates issues for any organisation in the increasing costs of planning and delivering care, the resourcing and delivery of it by the care workforce, the job satisfaction and ultimately that the people who use the services are not getting as much care as they sometimes need or want.
We should be concentrating on innovation in the way that social care can be delivered and giving total focus on getting it right every time and getting better all of the time. Instead, we are having to focus resources on fighting for vital funding, managing risks and simply retaining a sustainable business which can continue to both employ 2,500 staff and provide care to over 4,000 people. This is why we hope that the current media coverage can support public awareness and help the UKHCA ‘Save Our Homecare’ campaign and petition.
Thank you for taking the time to read this article and I hope we can count on your support.
CEO Agincare Group