A New Settlement

In the light this week of Gordon Brown finally owning up to a funding crisis in Social Care, I was interviewed by Kent TV on the subject a day or two ago. Entitled “The Ageing Timebomb” – http://www.kenttv.com/programmes.php?CID=27&SCID=63&PID=1269&Title=The+Ageing+Timebomb I discuss the demographics in Kent which will see an extra 60,000 pensioners in the county over the next eight years. I talk about the complexity of people’s needs and the cost of providing the levels of freedom and choice which the Labour Government espouses.

In the second part of the film, you’ll see an explanation of TeleHealth and TeleCare initiatives which use new technology to provide freedom and independence to hundreds of people across the county.

Kent has been successful in bidding for funds to extend its TeleCare and TeleHealth programmes, and was recently selected by the Department of Health as one of three national pilot projects, alongside Cornwall and Newham, representing the ‘Whole Systems Demonstrator’ exemplar of joint working between Social Care and Health.

Health Secretary Alan Johnson has this week announced the start of a six-month consultation on models of funding for health and social care. Care Services Minister Ivan Lewis suggested at a recent event where we spoke from the same platform that if you were reinventing health and social care “you wouldn’t start from here”.

Let’s just hope that this time the Government are serious. We need a new settlement with Government for health and social care.

The lives of thousands of frail, elderly and vulnerable people depend on it.

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