St Helens Council to receive £1m to help alleviate winter NHS pressures

Coun Marlene Quinn
Coun Marlene Quinn
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Around £1 million in government funding will be used to alleviate pressures this winter on adult social care services.

The Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) announced it would be making £240 million of additional funding available for councils to spend on adult social care services.

The money is intended to help councils alleviate winter pressures in the NHS, getting patients home quicker and freeing up hospital beds across England.

St Helens Council will receive £963,000, which was accepted by cabinet on Wednesday.

A cabinet report says it is important that the “maximum impact” for the local health and social system is achieved from the additional funding.

The report says the funds will be used to reduce delayed transfers of care (DTOC) and also to help to reduce extended length of stays.

The money can also be used to commission home care packages and home adaptations that support personal care.

In winter 2017, due to the increased number of care packages, the additional cost to provide domiciliary care for the council was £820,000.

In addition, there were an additional 24 admissions to residential and nursing care during winter incurring an additional cost of £333,000.

There was also an additional cost pressure of £90,000 due to increased activity in respite and short-term care services.

Coun Marlene Quinn told cabinet members: “It is anticipated that the increase in demand for packages of care and care home placements will be similar this winter period.

“It is therefore proposed that the £960,000 winter pressure money in St Helens is used to fund the increased demand for packaged of care and placements.

“It should be noted that St Helens Cares partners are supportive of this approach and recognise the significant role that adult social care services play in ensuring residents are supported at home, are only admitted to hospital when there is no alternative, and appropriate length of stay in hospital

“This proposal also complements and builds on the increase in services already completed from St Helens Care programmes.

“More beds at Brookfield Resource Centre, an increase in transitional beds at Parr Mount court, the award of an end of life domiciliary support contract to ensure that people at end of life can be supported to die in the place of their choice.”