The role of councils in social care has shifted significantly over the last few decades, from provision of services, to commissioning and increasingly to personalisation by supporting people to choose and manage the support they want to meet their own needs.
However, it has become increasingly difficult for local authorities to carry out this role as they have faced increasing budgetary pressures. Social care is absorbing a rising proportion of the resources available to councils. The amount of local government funding allocation being spent on statutory services such as social care is expected to increase in the coming years. London's local authorities face a funding pressure of up to £3.4 billion by the end of the decade.
Since 2010 spending on adult social care has fallen by 12 per cent in real terms at a time when the population of those looking for support has increased by 14 per cent. Demand for social services is expected to increase significantly as London's demographics change. Between 2014 and 2030 the population is expected to continue to grow and change:
- People will live longer and growth in the population of people over the age of 65 is expected to increase by 44 per cent
- People of working age with learning disabilities will increase by 15 per cent
- People of working age with physical disabilities will increase by 21 per cent
- People of working age with a mental health problem will increase by 14 per cent.
Through research, and policy analysis, we are working to illustrate the long term funding pressures that local authorities face and we are lobbying government for additional funding to enable local authorities to continue to support the vulnerable adults in need of social care services.
See also our work on funding of social care care and cost implications of the Care Act 2014.
A case for sustainable funding for adult social care - January 2013
Our report, supported by Ernst and Young and published in January 2013, explores the scale of the funding pressures on adult social care and the extent to which these could be mitigated through achieving greater efficiencies in the way that social care is managed, procured and delivered.
Impact of the Dilnot Commission's proposals on future funding of adult social care in London (May 2012)
In July 2011, the Dilnot Commission put forward several recommendations for reforming the funding of adult social care.
We carried out initial research to assess the potential impact of the commission’s proposals on the future funding needs for adult social care in London.