Date Published: 10 February 2010
Funding pressures must concentrate minds on health and social care reform, according to MHF
The Mental Health Foundation, which incorporates the Foundation for People with Learning Disabilities, welcomed the launch of the Care Quality Commission's first annual report on the state of health and social care services in England.
Change long overdue
However, the charity said that many of the CQC's recommendations have been made repeatedly over the last few decades, and that action is long overdue. Simon Lawton-Smith, Head of Policy for the Mental Health Foundation said:
" There has been a lot of talk about person-centred services and joined-up health and social care over the last twenty years, so in a way it's disappointing that the CQC still has to make these arguments. The hope now is that the likely need to reduce funding might concentrate minds on reform. An often overlooked benefit of treating people as individuals and focusing on maintaining their independence and health is that it has the potential to save money.?
Financial pressures must not lead to infighting
Alison Giraud-Saunders, Co-Director of the Foundation for People with Learning Disabilities warned that reform will only be possible if people across health and social care are willing to join forces:
" There are two ways of reacting to financial pressure, either by retreating in on yourself to protect your own budgets or by being open and trying to work more effectively together with others. We have concerns that around the country health and social care organisations are already beginning to fight over shrinking resources. If the kind of personalised, joined-up care the CQC is calling for is really going to happen then a more collaborative spirit will be needed.?
Source: Mental Health Foundation, UK.