Magazine article Public Finance

Councils' Care Funding Crisis 'Is Shifting Burden to PCTs'

Magazine article Public Finance

Councils' Care Funding Crisis 'Is Shifting Burden to PCTs'

Article excerpt

NHS primary care trusts have hit back at local authorities, claiming that they too are the victims of 'cost-shunting' as social care cuts have Increased demand for NHS services.

In a survey of 49 PCIs published on April 4, up to 31% reported Increased caseloads as councils stopped caring for adults whose needs were defined as 'moderate' or 'low'.

This tightening of social care eligibility criteria had led to increased pressures on PCT community health services, out-of-hours GP services and admissions to NHS nursing homes, the Primary Care Trust Network claimed.

David Stout, director of the network, said: 'This common move by local authorities to try and tackle local government deficits has meant that many NHS organisations have had to cope with a higher demand for services.'

Last year, the Local Government Association warned that a mixture of government underhindlng and NHS cost-shunting meant that two-thirds of councils could provide care services only to the most vulnerable and bedridden, whose needs were defined as 'substantial' or 'critical'. …

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