“The LGA has long championed fundamental reform of the current system and personal budgets are a key part in this, helping elderly and vulnerable people better manage their needs and control their own lives. Being able to make them available for anyone who wants one can only be a good thing.
“But the challenge of Britain’s ageing population is huge and councils are under massive financial strain having to tackle 28 per cent budget cuts. The extra money for adult social care received in the Comprehensive Spending Review was much-needed, but town halls still anticipate a potential multi-billion pound shortfall. This leaves serious questions about the funding to meet these Whitehall targets.
“We also need a shift of emphasis from providing care to prolonging independence through better public health, leisure and transport schemes, more adaptable housing and new technologies, as well as individuals and groups being supported to get involved in caring for their neighbours.
“Such council-driven innovation is already being seen across the country, helping people remain in the communities they know and love while saving taxpayers’ money by postponing the time when they may need intensive care and support.
“The LGA launched a paper on reforming adult social care earlier this month which stressed the importance of putting people at the heart of their own care. We will work with the Department of Health to make sure we all play our part in providing the services our nation deserves.”