Reforming adult social care in England - report

Read the CBF’s statement on the Public Accounts Committee’s most recent report on the need to reform adult social care in England.

On Wednesday 20th March, 2024, the Public Accounts Committee published their report on ‘Reforming adult social care in England’. This report highlights the need for stronger leadership and long-term financial support to fix the crisis facing social care. 

In this report, the Committee identifies a range of issues with social care in England and in the government’s plans to address these, and makes several recommendations to strengthen the sector and the plans for reform. The report specifically addresses: 

  • Funding for adult social care 
  • Workforce 
  • Monitoring and assessing progress 

In the CBF’s submission to the Public Accounts Committee, we highlighted that – where there are services available – these are focused on crisis, not on early intervention. Without the right community support available, people with learning disabilities are at risk of being detained in inpatient units, subjected to restrictive practices like restraint, seclusion, and overmedication, for an average length of stay of five years. This is unacceptable, and it is unnecessary. We are pleased that the Committee included our call for investment in community support in their report.  

Find out more about the actions the government needs to take to get community support right 

We agree with the Committee’s assessment that short-term pots of funding in response to crisis will not resolve the issues in adult social care, and that a longer-term approach is needed. Children and adults with severe learning disabilities, including people whose behaviour challenges, have lifelong support needs, and local authorities need sustained funding to be able to support them – so that they can plan ahead and proactively without the worry that funding will run out. The system needs reform, not a sticking plaster approach of short-term pilots and non-sustainable ‘quick wins’. 

We also agree with the Committee’s call for parity of pay – and esteem – between people working in social care and the equivalent roles in the NHS. The social care workforce is underpaid and undervalued, and government needs to act on the Committee’s recommendations for ensuring that the workforce is supported in order to address the sector’s issues with recruitment and retention.  

The Government’s response to the report and recommendations is key – will there be action that makes a difference or more warm words and inertia? 

Find out more about the actions that government needs to take to support the social care workforce 


You can read the full report here: 

Reforming adult social care in England 

You can read the CBF’s submission here: 

CBF submission