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Today (Wednesday 14th July) the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS) published the results of their Spring Survey.

It shows council budgets are not able to meet the increasing demands for care they are receiving. It also shows people requiring care and support are waiting long periods to receive a care assessment - some more than six months - or for direct payments to be implemented. Following the pandemic, nearly 160,000 people still had not had their annual review of their care package.

Even before the pandemic, carers were often waiting for carer’s assessments. Our 2019 survey of carers showed that, of those carers who had asked for a carer’s assessment, 20% waited longer than six months. This situation has clearly got worse as councils’ funding is squeezed even further at a time of unprecedented need.

Helen Walker, Chief Executive of Carers UK, said:

“The picture painted by ADASS’s Spring Survey could not be clearer: despite short term funding injections during the pandemic, councils are struggling to fund the increasing number of requests for care and support coming in, leaving families without the help they desperately need. 81% of carers told us they are providing more care since the start of the pandemic, and nearly three quarters say it’s because the needs of the person they care for have increased. 

“It is no surprise that many are experiencing burnout and telling us they are at breaking point - 35% said they feel unable to manage their caring role. Carers are desperately worried about the future, with fewer than one in five (14%) saying they are confident that the support they receive with caring will continue following the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We are deeply concerned about the level of carer breakdown councils are seeing - one of the main pressures on the social care system at the moment. It is unacceptable that carers are being pushed to the brink of collapse.

“Councils are in increasingly untenable situations making difficult funding decisions about services that affect people’s lives. Behind every statistic is a struggling family and a carer who needs support - they should not have to live their lives on hold. Long-term, sustainable investment in social care and a plan for reform that has carers at its heart must be set out by the Government at the earliest opportunity.”

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