Blog | Angela Gifford

Social Care. The divide between Care Providers relying on a Government funded customer base and Care Providers in the private, fee paying sector.

Despite the Government injection of more money into social care the number of people who are being supported by State funding continues to decline. The previous levels of care which were identified as low level or moderate care have stopped being funded by many local authorities, who have had to restrict their commissioning to critical or substantial need only.

With short visits to those in need still common, the notion of person centred care for many recipients has turned into a task orientated visit, based on a tick box care plan.

Care providers relying solely on the Government funded sector have found:
Their hours being reduced
The joined up working between health and social care not always evident to the detriment of both care provider and client
Increasing running costs, without being able to increase their invoices to accommodate the additional financial cost, e.g. council business rate increases, increasing training specifications, changing needs of their clients, etc.
Competition for staff who can earn higher hourly rates in other industry sectors
A nationwide shortage of social workers leading to delays in the discharge of patients from hospital frustrating the care providers who are expected to provide the care packages, often without discharge care plans being available
Council Approved Provider Lists with up to 100 plus providers do not ensure a regular supply of work
They are not always able to provide their clients with either the necessary or appropriate levels of care
Cash flow problems

Care Providers embracing the private fee-paying sector:
Survive and grow on the quality of the services they provide.
Can price the services they offer appropriately and competitively
Can more easily refuse potential clients for whom they feel they are unable to fully support
Can be flexible and innovative in the services they provide.
Can offer more client centred care packages
Have a shorted communication line between care provider and client/families.
Can offer higher care worker financial rates.
Have fewer cash flow problems.

Conclusion: Is it any wonder that many UK care providers who previously relied on Government for their survival and growth, are now, for the first time, seriously looking to the private fee-paying market for new customers. Sadly, this will be to the detriment of those who rely on their care bills being paid for by Government in the future.

By: Angela E Gifford
Posted: 29 Mar 2018

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