This latest news in from the Isle of Wight council. Ed
Councillor Richard Priest, newly appointed Executive member for adult social care and public health has called on the Isle of Wight Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) to reverse its decision to stop its financial contribution to supporting the protection of adult social care services on the Island.
Equivalent to 4.5% rise in council tax
Councillor Priest said:
“In looking at the council’s budget options for 2017/18 and beyond I am disappointed to see that despite many months of debate and discussion, the CCG will have reduced its funding to support adult social care by over £3.1 million by the beginning of 2018/19. It is difficult for the council to replace such a significant amount of funding, and its loss can only impact on the delivery of social services to the most vulnerable within our community.
“This funding loss is the financial equivalent of a 4.5 per cent increase in the council tax to fund adult social care alone. At a time when the government is allowing a maximum increase of three per cent to cover pressures in the costs of adult social care, it is going to be extremely challenging to absorb this loss of funding.”
Better Care Fund
The funding has been provided to the council as part of its Better Care Fund arrangements with the CCG; an addition to the minimum amount of £3.6 million which the CCG is required to pass to the council.
The Better Care Fund is an NHS England funded programme, working across the NHS and local government; it takes the form of a local, single fund, to support ways that the NHS and local government can work more closely together for the benefit of the most vulnerable in society.
Benefits will be lost and problems caused
Leader of the Isle of Wight council, Dave Stewart, added:
“I recognise that the CCG has its own financial challenges, but I am sure that it recognised the benefits that would accrue from the additional funding when it first agreed it with the council. These benefits will be lost and problems caused across the whole of the health and care system if it continues with this approach.
“I hope to have an urgent meeting with representatives of the CCG to see if there is any prospect of the funding being reinstated.
“In the mean time I am pleased that we have secured the services of a Better Care advisor to explore whether there any options for brokering a different arrangement with the CCG or configuration of services that will help protect the vitally important services we are providing our most vulnerable residents.”