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Social care underfunding affects more than Surrey - Farron

February 9, 2017 4:02 PM

South Lakes MP Tim Farron has insisted that the underfunding of social care is a national problem that the government must address, as the latest data shows that the local NHS lost over 1400 days due to problems in social care causing 'bed-blocking'. This comes following allegations that Surrey County Council was given a special deal for social care funding.

Data released by the NHS today shows that hospitals run by the Morecambe Bay NHS Trust, which includes the Westmorland General Hospital in Kendal as well as the Royal Lancaster Infirmary and the Furness General Hospital, lost 1443 bed days due to problems in social care provision meaning that patients could not be moved on. The majority of these cases were individuals waiting for a placement in a nursing home.

The government is currently under pressure to release details of an alleged special deal that was given to Surrey County Council to pay for social care.

Tim said: "These figures show that the social care crisis does not end at the borders of Surrey. This is a national crisis and needs a national response. Instead, the government's response is simply to pass the buck on to local councils, and to hit council taxpayers with increases that will hit poorer households disproportionately.

"Our social care system is being starved of cash and drained of workers, failing older people and putting huge pressure on the NHS. The government needs to step up and provide proper funding for social care. All local authorities need to be given a fair deal, not just Surrey.

"The government's failure to properly fund social care is hitting the front line of the NHS."