Elderly care

I believe that improving the quality of elderly care in the UK should be one of our highest priorities. 1.4 million people work in the country's social care sector, and I would like to pay tribute to their excellent work. 
 
Caring for the elderly is one of the most significant challenges facing our ageing society. The independent Care Quality Commission (CQC) rightly holds our care system to the highest possible standards, and has recently completed a comprehensive survey of social care in England. CQC ratings are authoritative and independent, and publicly available, so people can make well-informed choices when they come to choosing a care home.
 
I am encouraged by the latest report from the CQC, which has found that, despite financial pressure, four out of five adult social care services in England rated good or outstanding. The CQC report has, however, highlighted areas for concern, such as the regional disparity in quality of care, and the rate of improvement of care services. I will make every effort to persuade the Government to build on its recent improvements to social care.
 
I am encouraged that short-term measures have been introduced to support councils to manage adult social care. In total, the Government has given councils access to up to £10.29 billion more dedicated funding for social care over the three years up to 2019-20. Money alone will not fix the problem and Ministers are clear that far-reaching reform is needed to encourage high standards across the whole country.
 
Furthermore, the Department of Health and Social Care is implementing Quality Matters, a vital scheme committed to improving the care sector for patients, families, and carers alike. This scheme makes it clear care home providers must be transparent and work closely with the public, to develop care homes which are not only of the highest quality possible, but adapted to the needs of their locality.