National Audit Office Review of Adult social care market in England [24th March 2021]

This is the annual report by the NAO on the social care market and contains a detailed analysis of the current state of the care market [2019 / 2020]

It provides:

  1. An overview of the market
  2. An assessment of market oversight
  3. Plans for future reform

In 2019/ 2020, Local Authorities spent a net £16.5 billion with 839,000 adults receiving long term support.

However, current demographic trends suggest a demand nor only for more care but for increasingly complex care needs which will result in an increase in the proportion of public expenditure being necessary to meet these needs.

They forecast that there will be a 106% increase in the total cost of care for adults over the age of 65 by 2038 compared to 2018.

The NAO points out some shortcomings in the system, some of which have been highlighted by Covid-19, which it states has emphasised existing gaps in the Department of Health and Social Care’s understanding of the market.

NAO notes that recently, the DHCS has taken steps to increase the capacity of their teams and strengthen accountability and assurance, but feels this must be capitalised upon when government does focus on reform of social care.

A summary of the report and a link to the whole analysis can be found at: https://www.nao.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2021/03/The-adult-social-care-market-in-England-Summary.pdf

(Author: Tish Hanifan)