MPs launch inquiry into long-term care

Inquiry will help form response to social care white paper

A group of MPs has launched an independent inquiry into long-term care.

The All Party Parliamentary Local Government Group, drawn from MPs and peers from all parties across the House of Commons and the House of Lords, is to examine how local authorities can deliver adult social care while retaining citizens’ financial independence.

The inquiry is intended to inform the group’s response to the government’s social care white paper on the future of care and funding, expected in May.

The inquiry, sponsored by Partnership, will hear evidence over three weeks from experts across the adult social care sector, including the Department of Health, Age UK, ADASS, the King’s Fund, senior parliamentarians and local authorities. 

The Parliamentary Group, supported by think tank the Local Government information Unit, will collate evidence and publish recommendations in the summer.  

Chris Horlick, managing director of care at Partnership, said: “Partnership has been working closely with local authorities to help them integrate financial advice within their services to self-payers, who currently account for over 40% of people in the care system.

“Access to appropriate financial advice is critical to self-payers. Of the 53,000 people who entered residential care in 2009, only 7,000 received appropriate financial advice.”

He added: “The All Party Parliamentary Group’s scrutiny in this area is extremely welcome.”

Heather Wheeler MP, chair of the All Party Local Government Group, said: “Holding this inquiry is so important. At a local level social care is a massive issue both because of the quality of care delivered, but also the cost of care.”

She said that while last year’s Dilnot Report helped to raise awareness of the issue, many questions remain unanswered.

Wheeler added: "This inquiry gives us the opportunity to explore this area, hear from experts, and contribute to finding ways forward to the white paper".

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