Central Bedfordshire Council has welcomed a boost of £325,000 in emergency funding that will go towards social care provision over the next three months.
The government money – a total of £25million, shared among 65 local authorities – will help reduce the numbers of hospital patients ready for discharge that have experienced Delayed Transfers of Care (DTOC).
The funds will allow for quicker hospital discharges, with the hospital teams able to work on seven days rather than five, though, in the last week, there were no reported delays attributed to social care.
The grant will also help do more in the community and increase capacity in other areas, such as preventing people from going into hospital with the Urgent Homecare Falls and Response Service.
Provisional allocation for the funding will be:
• £95,000 - Rapid Home Care response service
• £20,000 - Use of Age UK/Red Cross from Handy Van/Domestic support
• £30,000 - 7 Day Working for the Hospital team
• £180,000 - Home Care Packages as a result of hospital discharge
Cllr Carole Hegley, executive member for social care, health and housing, said: “There is extra demand on health and social services all over the UK, so this money is a welcome boost to target the winter pressures period.
“Indeed, I must praise my council colleagues for working so quickly and effectively to secure this short term funding and we will continue to review and plan responses to system pressures throughout the year.
“However, I am pleased that, as an authority, we had already recognised the greater demand for care services due to the ageing population in Central Bedfordshire.
“The Rapid Homecare Support service was implemented on 14th November last year, while the delivery of care and support services is a key area outlined in the draft budget, which proposes that £63million is spent on social care and housing in 2015/16.”