10 Jun 2024

The Homecare Association welcomes the Liberal Democrats' extended plans for reforming social care outlined in their 2024 manifesto.

Their flagship policy of introducing free personal care modelled on the system in Scotland could be transformative for millions of people and families struggling with growing care costs. Properly funded, this would allow more people to access care in their own homes and communities as they wish. In our own manifesto, we made it clear that the government must find new and fairer ways to cover the costs of care, ensuring universal access regardless of ability to pay.

We are also encouraged by the Liberal Democrats’ focus on supporting carers and boosting the professionalisation of the care workforce through better pay, training and career development. Recognising care workers' skilled roles through a new Royal College and establishing robust workforce planning are positive steps our sector has long called for.

Commenting on their manifesto, CEO of the Homecare Association, Dr Jane Townson OBE, said:

"Successfully delivering these reforms requires a secure, long-term funding settlement that keeps up with increasing demand for care.

“Empowering care users through personal budgets, digital platforms and improved care planning processes is welcome, but any rollout must involve extensive co-production with homecare providers to ensure these initiatives work effectively.

“Many of the Liberal Democrats pledges align with our priorities for homecare outlined in our manifesto, which support the reform of the social care system. We stand ready to work with all parties to turn these policies into a reality that provides affordable, quality homecare for all.

“Overall, while this manifesto contains some positive aims, there are several unanswered questions around funding sources and deliverability, especially at a time when the economic outlook is highly uncertain. We eagerly await further details from the Liberal Democrats on their proposed cross-party commission to reach a consensus on sustainable social care funding.”

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