Motion 60 and amendments
Health and social care in the UK is facing a funding crisis. According to NHS Improvement 44 per cent of trusts overspent their budgets in 2017/18 and alarmingly, the NHS provider sector as a whole ended 2017/18 with a deficit of £960m. Furthermore, the Health Foundation suggested the social care funding gap is projected to reach £2.1bn by 2019/20.
These funding gaps are leaving dedicated staff in the sector having to pay for resources from their own pockets. The British Dietetic Association has gathered evidence that shows a high percentage of members are forced to pay for stationery, equipment and other resources in order to do their jobs effectively. This ranges from basic stationery to fridges, fans, uniforms, weighing scales and essential reference books. Staff are also conducting home visits to members of the public using their own vehicles but not being paid the nationally agreed mileage rates, thus incurring additional costs for already low paid NHS staff. Congress is appalled that staff are also buying food and other essentials such as baby milk and nappies for vulnerable patients.
Congress condemns the practice of workers paying to do their jobs. And local government budget cuts that have increased financial pressures on the social care system.
Congress is concerned that NHS workers are facing immense difficulties in securing funding and time off to undertake essential professional development training, leaving them to self-fund. This can amount to hundreds of pounds per year for course fees, text books, accommodation and travel along with the loss of annual leave and rest days.
Congress calls for:
- continued pressure on the government to spend a higher proportion of the UK’s wealth on health and social care in line with other comparable economies and bring an end to reliance on the good will and dedication of already hard-pressed staff to deliver the services so desperately needed
- a long-term funding settlement for health and social care
- adequate funding and time off for essential professional development, including for care workers.
- a campaign to highlight the widespread practice of public sector workers subsidising services
- integration of health and social care services to improve the quality of care.
Mover: British Dietetic Association
Seconder: Chartered Society of Physiotherapy
Supporters: Community; The College of Podiatry