Tag Archives: social care

Norman Lamb MP writes: I am determined everyone should be able to get good quality care

James Terry Court, Croydon - License Some rights reserved by sjr60If you watched Panorama last week, you will have been as horrified as I was by some of the footage.  The treatment portrayed was disgraceful and a very clear illustration of the need for the changes that we are currently introducing in the health and care sector. As Liberal Democrat Care Minister, I am determined that everyone should be able to get good quality care, and to be treated with dignity.

As minister, I want to make sure that we are able to …

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Norman Lamb MP, Baroness Liz Barker and Paul Burstow write…Care Bill builds better, stronger, more liberal care system

Care in the home Some rights reserved by British Red CrossLast week, historic legislation on social care was debated for the final time in the Commons. It has been an exhaustive – and at times exhausting – process, and one of the most inclusive and consultative pieces of legislation ever. We worked with people across the political spectrum to get this right – as ever, a true Lib Dem hallmark.

Starting back in 2010 when Paul Burstow in the Department of Health published a new vision for social care, we have at every stage worked to engage, reach out, and listen to as many stakeholders as possible.

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Paul Burstow MP writes…My two suggestions to improve the Care Bill

Knowing that you will receive the best care available is of critical importance to everyone who finds themselves needing support from social care services. This is why when I was Care Minister, I was passionate about making that a reality – and I still am. As Minister I published the Care Bill, overhauling decades of complex, arcane and out of date legislation to set out a social care system fit for the twenty first century.

The Care Bill, which I subsequently scrutinised as Chair of the Joint Committee on the Bill, is a piece of legislation I – and Liberal Democrats …

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Norman Lamb writes… A once-in-a-generation opportunity to fix our health and care system

In 1997 Tony Blair told the Labour Party conference “I don’t want brought up in a country where the only way pensioners can get long-term care is by selling their home.” And yet speaking to the Health Select Committee in 2010, in Labour’s final months in office, Andy Burnham said, “every member of the Cabinet believed social care to be an area that had not been properly reformed and was one of great unfairness”. In thirteen years of talk, and promises, Labour did nothing to fix our dysfunctional, and profoundly unfair, system of funding social care.

In …

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Norman Lamb writes … The start of a revolution in joined-up care

Back in May, I wrote on Lib Dem Voice, about the launch of a programme of “Integration Pioneers” to drive forward the revolution in joined-up care that is desperately needed across the NHS and social care.

On Friday, I announced the final outcome of a rigorous process to select the very best leaders in integrated care. A panel of experts, including some of the global leaders in integrated care, scrutinised the bids. Now, 14 Pioneers spread across England covering rural and urban areas will lead a movement of change joining up a horribly fragmented system which too often let’s …

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Norman Lamb is surely right: pensioners who own their own homes and have more than £23,000 savings are ‘quite wealthy’

“If someone as well as their home has substantial other assets, money in the bank, shares or whatever, should they be expected to use those assets to pay for care? Or should we say, we will always defer the costs of selling their home? If you’ve got a vast amount of money in the bank, you’re quite wealthy, it’s desirable that we protect that money but the scheme has to be affordable. If together with owning your own home, you have more than £23,000-odd in the bank, the question is should you be expected to use that money. You are

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Norman Lamb MP writes: Ensuring transparency and accountability in the Health Service

In recent months we have seen some shocking examples of failures of care within the health service. Tragic events such as those which occurred at the Mid-Staffordshire Hospital and the Winterbourne View Hospital have demonstrated a desperate need to ensure that people are held to account when awful things happen across the NHS and care services.

It is clear that we need to restore trust in health and care services. When a serious failing occurs it is simply unacceptable for patients and their families to be left in the dark or to feel that those responsible have not had to face …

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LibLink…Norman Lamb: What can we do to improve care in the home?

We’ve seen some awful stories in the media over the last few weeks about poor standards of home care. Norman Lamb has been writing in the Guardian about what the Government can do to ensure that everyone has good quality care.

First he outlines the problems:

One of the most common complaints I come across is where care is carried out by the clock. Carers will come to the house and have a time slot of around 15 minutes to get everything done and be off to the next appointment. But 15 minutes may not be enough to do what is needed.

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Danny Alexander MP writes… Spending where it matters

Our number one priority in Government has been to fix the economic mess we inherited from Labour. Today, we set out a Spending Round that delivers Liberal Democrat priorities on investment and improving our public services while making responsible choices to deal with the financial problems Labour left us. It demonstrates that the Liberal Democrats will remain firm in our commitment to tackling the deficit, but fair in the way we go about it.

When we entered Government in May 2010, we inherited from Labour an economy that was on the brink. We set out a plan to get our economy …

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Baroness Judith Jolly writes: new Social Care Bill focuses on people not systems

The Care Bill is a once-in-a-generation opportunity to reform the social care system. Currently there is a morass of legislation, confusing to those who work in the system and almost impenetrable to those in need of care, or their carers. It is leaving behind those who fund themselves to work it out as they go along. These are the most vulnerable in our society – the elderly and those of working age who are disabled and need care. The Bill focuses on people, not systems, and has received plaudits from all quarters.

Today I will stand up …

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LDVIdeo: Nick Clegg on pensions and carers’ reforms

From the Guardian, video of Nick Clegg talking about Liberal Democrat inspired pensions reforms and help for the elderly and their carers.

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Paul Burstow writes: Greater focus on funding, prevention and integration essential to improve the social care in England

The law governing social care in England is a dog’s breakfast. The product of 60 years of piecemeal legislating it is complex, confusing and sometime contradictory patchwork that is out of date and hard to understand. The government have recognised the need to change this and last year published the draft Care and Support Bill, Caring for our future: reforming care and support, to overhaul the legal framework.

As the Minister at the time I led drafting the Bill drawing on the recommendations of a Law Commission Review.  My aim throughout has been to secure a modern legal framework that is …

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Norman Lamb MP writes… Ending unlimited care costs: an historic step

This Coalition is at its best when it is tackling the country’s long-term structural problems. That, after all, is why we came together with the Conservatives to form a Coalition Government and deal with the record deficit that we inherited from the last Labour government. Nowhere is this more evident than in today’s historic announcement to protect people, for the first time ever, from the threat of unlimited care costs. That is why I have been pushing relentlessly for this reform since my first day in the job in September.

For anyone doubting whether this is a truly “historic” announcement, …

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Jeremy Hunt announces Social Care reform

Jeremey Hunt has just announced the heavily pre-trailed social care reforms in the Commons. Here is Andrew Sparrow’s digest of his speech from the Guardian’s Live Blog:

Jeremy Hunt, the health secretary, says none of us know what care needs we will face when we get older.

Many older people face paying “limitless, often ruinous” care costs.

The current system is “desperately unfair”. More than 30,000 people a year have their savings wiped out.

This discourages people from saving, he says.

Today he is announcing the government’s proposals.

A cap will be introduced for the maximum amount that an individual might have to pay, and

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Opinion: The other care crisis

Wheelchair signs - Some rights reserved by Leo ReynoldsOver the course of this Parliament, social care reform could become the most distinctive area of Liberal Democrat influence in the Coalition.

The Party has the strongest foothold in an issue that is permeated by talk of ‘cross party consensus’ (although, to date, the rhetoric has led to precious little real agreement), with both Ministers for Social Care under the Coalition – and probably the biggest voices – being Lib Dems, in Paul Burstow and Norman Lamb.

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Here comes the Mid-Term Review (Slimmed Down edition)

Nick Clegg and David CameronRight, time to set the alarm clock extra early for tomorrow morning to do a Radio 5 Live interview as it’s the week of the Mid-Term Review.

Not the original Mid-Term Review, as was planned back in the early days of the Parliament, that is – but the Slimmed Down Super Light edition, which will contain a fair amount of ‘look how we’re doing better than Labour’ and then a clutch of new policy announcements for the second half of this Parliament.

How well or badly the former is …

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Norman Lamb writes… Lessons from Winterbourne View

On Friday last week, eleven former members of staff at Winterbourne View private hospital were sentenced for the shocking neglect and abuse of their former patients. Six have been jailed, and five others given suspended sentences. I hope that these sentences will send a clear message that such criminal behaviour will not be tolerated and that there will be real consequences for the perpetrators. It was abuse of power of the worst sort.

The case should reinforce to everyone, from frontline workers, to regulators, service commissioners, managers and board members, that they have a shared responsibility in preventing abuse of people …

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Opinion: We must make the Care and Support Bill a reality

Much of the talk at the Autumn Conference in Brighton has rightly centred on the economy and we, in my opinion, are rightly sticking to Plan A and not being deviated towards Plan B or Plan V.

However, we as Liberal Democrats in government and on the ground have another area of policy in which we can make a significant and lasting change in this parliament. Social Care is not a sexy subject, it is not often at the forefront of people’s minds nor does it command a full chamber in parliament but it is vital to a liberal, fair and …

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LibLink: Paul Burstow – Why is the Coalition failing to tackle our broken care system?

Lib Dem MP Paul Burstow, until the reshuffle the Lib Dem health minister, has written an article in today’s Telegraph with a plea for the Coalition to ‘be bold and take the decisions needed to fix our broken social care system’. Here are a couple of excerpts, first looking at why Paul fears the reforms he pushed in government might not go anywhere:

The Coalition understood the “urgent need for reform”, and has been wrestling with these issues since May 2010. In July the White Paper I drafted was published. It tackles much that is wrong with care. Widely welcomed, it

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Paul Burstow MP writes… Radically reforming social care

Most of you will have a friend or family member who needs some kind of care and support to help them get through the day.

In fact, more than 80% of us will need some form of care once we turn 65 – which is why getting social care right is so important.

It’s important because it touches upon some of the most essential things in life, like being healthy, happy and independent.

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How to fund care and support for the elderly

The Institute of Fiscal Studies has published a detailed paper on how the proposals of the Dilnot Commission on care and support for the elderly can be funded:

The Dilnot Commission proposed changes which would involve a degree of co-payment between individuals and the state, and a much less harsh meanstest on assets than in the current system. The

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Care – dilemmas for us all

When my grandfather was in his last week of life I was sitting by his bedside in the local community hospital as he dozed peacefully in a morphine assisted haze.

Suddenly, all hell broke loose next door. I stormed into the other room to see a small group of care assistants throwing pillows from one to another and loudly humming the theme tune from Star Trek.

“Do you mind?” I said: “there’s a man dying in there”.  An instant spokeswoman apologised unreservedly but went on to point out gently: “It’s hard for us too and we have to have a bit of …

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Opinion: Crisis in our social care system, a personal memoir

There is a crisis in our social care system and it needs addressing as a matter of urgency.

I made a public call for cross party talks on social care following an interview on BBC Radio Berkshire last Autumn.

The interview came about because I started a campaign, ‘Crusading for Carers’, aimed at highlighting the plight of carers.

During that interview I was asked what I’d like politicians to do about the growing crisis in our social care system. I was aware of the Dilnot Report and of the cross party talks that took place prior to the General Election so I called for them to …

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The Independent View: Social care and the Dilnot Commission

Last year’s Liberal Democrat manifesto promised that “We will establish an independent commission, with cross-party support, to develop proposals for long-term care of the elderly.” The new Government took swift action on this manifesto call, setting up an independent commission chaired by Andrew Dilnot in July last year. This week, the Commission on the Funding of Care and Support will present its recommendations on how social care funding can be reformed to ensure a sustainable and affordable care system for the future.

Age UK’s recent report, Care in Crisis, highlighted the serious issues plaguing our care system. At …

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Paul Burstow MP writes: Social care’s little secret – it’s never been free

None of us know if we will need care in the future, or how much it might cost. But we do know that 1 in 4 of us will face care costs of more than £50,000. What’s more, 1 in 10 will be unlucky enough to face care costs of more than £100,000 in our older age. This is social care’s nasty little secret.

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Paul Burstow writes… Our vision for social care

Earlier today the government announced its social care plans. Paul Burstow explains the thinking behind them and what they will achieve:

Social care is essential for most people at some time in their life. It embraces the most intimate care for people, often at times of great distress. At its core, social care is about helping people to live their lives. It should enable people, and their carers, to live the independent life most of us take for granted. But this isn’t happening. Instead of a system that protects and enables the most vulnerable, we have an unsustainable and iniquitous …

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Lamb’s challenge to Lansley: let’s get to grips with social care

Lib Dem shadow health secretary Norman Lamb has today written to his Tory opposite number Andrew Lansley to urge him to attend this Friday’s conference on social care.

The Tories are refusing to attend the cross-party conference – following last week’s tribal spat – on the basis that the Labour Government will not rule out a compulsory levy. This is despite earlier indications that Mr Lansley accepted that the issue of voluntary versus compulsory schemes was one of the key points to be resolved in a consensus building process.

Norman has also called for the talks to be held in the open, …

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Recent Comments

  • User AvatarPaul Walter 21st Oct - 5:33pm
    The way he is holding the document makes it relatively obvious he is doing it on purpose.
  • User AvatarCaron Lindsay 21st Oct - 5:24pm
    #iagreewithAlice. This is a chance for Nick to right a huge wrong. We should have had a woman in the Cabinet a long time ago....
  • User AvatarRobin McGhee 21st Oct - 5:19pm
    Great article! Really can't see a reason not to have Jo Swinson in as Scottish Secretary, at the very least.
  • User AvatarHelen Tedcastle 21st Oct - 5:18pm
    I agree with Caron Lindsay - well said.
  • User AvatarRC 21st Oct - 5:12pm
    Just to repeat my point, you don't have to have a surplus to start reducing the relative size of the debt, if the economy is...
  • User AvatarRC 21st Oct - 5:10pm
    @ Bill le Breton If there isn't, we're going to be heading deeper and deeper into a debt spiral from which it will be difficult...