Social care reforms met with cautious optimism

CEO of Home Instead UK, Martin Jones is cautiously optimistic about the government’s plans for social care reform announced in parliament yesterday (1st December 2021).

The publishing of the Adult Social Care Reform White Paper marks a 10-year ‘vision’ for how the Government seeks to transform and support adult social care.

The vision is based around three major objectives:

-People have choice, control, and support to live independent lives

-People can access outstanding quality and tailored care and support

-People find adult social care fair and accessible.

Most notably for Home Instead is the inclusion in the foreword by Health Secretary, Sajid Javid that there was a need for “investment and innovation right across the sector, to shift away from a reliance on residential care and offer people genuine options for drawing on outstanding care at home.”

Speaking about this Martin said, “At last we have recognition that we cannot rely on residential care. Not only is there not enough bricks and mortar provision to keep up with the needs of our rapidly ageing population, more importantly, the vast majority of people wish to remain in their own homes.

“With quality home care, we can support peoples’ wishes; allowing them to maintain their wellbeing whilst living independently.”

Home Instead’s model is based on person-centred care which caters for the needs and wants of individual clients and their loved ones. We have championed this type of care since we were founded and so we are delighted that there is a theme of person-centred care running through the new vision.

There is also particular emphasis on and funding for developing a skilled workforce; another aspect of care we are passionate about. We are proud to be an employer of choice in the sector and of championing a move towards professionalising care work.

There is mention of integrating home care into the current health and care strategies, however an integration white paper is expected to follow the publication of this one in the coming months.

As a brand we are also committed to developing a high-tech, high-touch approach to home care where technology supports the very best care and is used to enable a safe, independent life at home whilst keeping loved ones up to date and reassured.

The white paper also promises a significant investment (at least £150m) to deliver a programme of digital transformation. The plan outlines how technology could enhance the quality of care and make the workforce more efficient.

Our recent partnership with Honor, the leading home care technology and operations platform, will help us to transform the CAREGiver and client experience and echoes the Government’s aspirations for digitally-enhanced care.

In conclusion, Martin said, “Our sector has had many promises in the past which have remained unfulfilled.

“Yesterday’s announcement does feel like a step-change with home care finally being given its rightful place in society and an acknowledgement that our sector has a key role to play moving forwards.”