Robert Stephenson

Newly released data highlights social care funding crisis in north west London

Yesterday, 31 Jan 2013, the NHS Health and Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC) published the fiscal year 2011-12 (fiscal year ending March 31, 2012) data on England’s expenditure and unit costs in providing personal social care services and it reveals a social care sector in north west London which is in a far more severe funding crisis than we at Penrose Care initially anticipated.

When reading the below data keep in mind that according to data from ONS (2012), the 65+ population in Camden is projected to increase by 2,566 to 26,735 in mid-2021 from 24,169 in mid-2011. The 65+ population in Westminster is projected to increase by 6,178 to 30,801 in mid-2021 from 24,623 in mid-2011.

Camden Council’s expenditure on home care fell a whopping 20.7% year-on-year in FY2011-12

Within Camden, Penrose Care’s home council area, FY2011-12 gross council expenditure on adult residential and nursing care and home help/care declined 10.7% year-on-year (“yoy”) to £51.4mn from £57.6mn and the number of weeks of adult residential and nursing care and home care provided fell 3.7% yoy to 81,104 in FY2011-12 from 84,756 weeks in FY2010-11.

Camden’s expenditure on home care specifically fell a whopping 20.7% yoy in FY2011-12 to £10.7mn from £13.5mn in FY2010-11. The average unit price paid by Camden Council paid to independent home care providers fell 6.7% to £19.61/hour.

The pain has been felt in both residential and nursing care as well as home care. The total number of weeks of older people supported in council-funded residential and nursing care in Camden fell by 11.4% yoy and the number of council-funded home care “contact hours” fell by a staggering 15.0% to 545,426 hours in FY2011-12.

On a positive note, 95 more adults in Camden received direct payments at the end of FY2011-12 bringing the total to 535 from 440 at the end of FY2010-11. However, total funding for direct payments only increased £969,000 vs the decline of £6,153,000 in gross expenditure on residential and nursing care and home help/care for all adult client groups in FY2011-12 vs FY2010-11. The average gross weekly expenditure on direct payments per adult receiving direct payments at 31 March 2012 was £192.74/week, a slight increase from £192.00/week in FY2010-11.

Westminster Council’s expenditure on home care fell a horrendous 30.6% year-on-year in FY2011-12

In Westminster, the council area where St John’s Wood and Maida Vale are located, FY2011-12 gross council expenditure on adult residential and nursing care and home help/care declined 18.8% year-on-year (“yoy”) to £54.5mn from £67.1mn achieved by gutting payment rates as the number of weeks of adult residential and nursing care and home care provided actually increased quite dramatically by 10.2% to 97,522 in FY2011-12 from 88,457 in FY2010-11.

Westminster Council’s expenditure on home care fell a horrendous 30.6% yoy in FY2011-12 to £13.3mn from £19.1mn in FY2010-11. The average unit price paid by Westminster Council to independent home care providers fell 19.5% to £17.07/hour.

Despite the increase in the number of weeks adults received some sort of council-funded care in Westminster in FY2011-12, the provision of care to elderly in residential and nursing care and adults receiving home care both declined in FY2011-12 vs FY2010-11. The total number of weeks of older people supported in council-funded residential and nursing care in Westminster fell by 6.0% yoy and the number of council-funded home care “contact hours” fell 13.7% to 775,253 hours in FY2011-12.

The number of direct payments recipients in Westminster declined by 110 people to 395 in FY2011-12. As a result, spending on direct payments declined by 8.1% yoy to £5.6mn despite a 17.3% yoy increase in the average direct payment to £272.18/week from £231.95/week.

Conclusion

This newly released data demonstrates the necessity of what we are committed to doing at Penrose Care – providing excellent care with compassion – and highlights the need for the independent sector to improve the lives of numerous individuals who have or are going to be negatively adversely impacted by the ongoing public social care austerity measures in Camden and Westminster.

In our commitment to excellence in care, we are proud to remain north London’s only home care provider to be an Accredited Living Wage Employer (according to the Living Wage Foundation’s most recent accreditation list published 24 Dec 2012) – as we recognise that care professionals must themselves be well treated and feel secure to help ensure they treat our loved ones well and help provide them with a sense of security.

References

Accredited Living Wage Employers: 24 Dec 2012 (Living Wage Foundation, 2012), available online here.

Personal Social Services: Expenditure and Unit Costs, England 2010-11: 29 Mar 2012 (NHS Information Centre, 2012), available online here.

Personal Social Services: Expenditure and Unit Costs, England 2011-12: 31 Jan 2013 (NHS Information Centre, 2013), available online here.

Subnational population projections for England, Interim 2011-based: 28 Sep 2012 (ONS, 2012), available online here.

Robert Stephenson-Padron is Penrose Care’s managing director. Prior to founding Penrose Care in 2012 with Dr. Matthew Knight, Mr. Stephenson-Padron was a healthcare equity research analyst at Merrill Lynch in London. Prior to joining Merrill Lynch in in 2010, Mr. Stephenson-Padron was a healthcare equity research analyst at Barclays Capital, also based in London. From 2003-2008, Mr. Stephenson-Padron was a research assistant to epidemiologist Prof. Alison Galvani of Yale University.

Twitter Feed