Social care: Expert warns MPs crisis will only ‘increase’ without ‘long term solution’

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THE SOCIAL CARE CRISIS can only be solved by a “long term solution” and not just pledging funding each year, a care expert has warned politicians in an interview with Express.co.uk.

Dr Ben Maruthappu, a London-based doctor and co-founder & CEO of Cera Care, a multi-award winning technology company transforming social care, spoke to Express.co.uk about the burning social care crisis in the UK. Considering the large role the NHS is playing in the general election, he revealed what governments can do to solve the situation. Dr Maruthappu called on politicians to consider a “long term focus” and “cross-party solutions” instead of “having an announcement here or there”.

He told Express.co.uk: “I think all parties are realising that the NHS and care is a major priority for us as a nation, and there are some challenges that we need to overcome.

“The amount of additional investment that has been pledged to social care is certainly welcome.

“It’s a step in the right direction, but I think what we really need to think about is a long term solution.

“Governments in the past, and I’m sure governments in the future, have always pledged top-ups here and there for this year or the next year in terms of increased funding for social care.”

Dr Maruthappu continued: “Maybe it’s £1billion more next year or it’s £2billion more the year after.

“But actually how do we solve the problem in the long term?

“We have an ageing population, the number of people who need care is only going to increase.

“Rather than having an announcement here or there, what is the long term focus and long term solution that all of us feel comfortable with and is sustainable for this country?”

The care expert added: “I think that takes a cross-party solution and effort to come to, where everyone steps in and says ‘you know what? We agree that this is a challenge and we agree on what the solution looks like’.

“We know we all need to come together to solve it because it’s one of the biggest challenges our nation is facing.

“I think that’s how we’re going to tackle it, but at the moment, none of the manifestos focus on the long-term, sustainable solution to improving care and how it’s funded.”

The Conservatives have pledged £5billion for social care over five years and plan to develop new long-term plan with cross-party support.

Labour are promising £10.8billion to provide for free personal social care for over-65s.

The Liberal Democrats plan to raise income tax by 1p in order to invest in health and social care, allowing the NHS budget to be increased by £26 billion a year by 2023-24. They also want to create an independent budget monitoring body for health and care, similar to the Office for Budget Responsibility.

The Green Party has pledged £4.5billion a year to provide free social care for over-65s who need support in their own homes.

The Brexit Party announced they would open nursing and midwifery professions to people without a degree and introduce a new nursing qualification in social care.

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