A National Care Service for Scotland – CTA’s Response
by David Kelly
Director for Scotland
The Scottish Government recently concluded a consultation on its plans for a National Care Service for Scotland, which will be of significant interest to many CTA members in Scotland.
The idea has evolved from a recommendation of the Feeley Review of adult social care. It also featured in manifestos of the SNP, Scottish Greens and Scottish Labour ahead of the Holyrood elections in May 2021.
The Scottish Parliament is expected to legislate in 2022 for the creation of a new public body on an equal footing with the NHS which will deliver accountability for and oversee the delivery of universal services in adult social care, child social care and child social work, which are free at the point of use supported by a 25% increase in public funding. The National Care Service will be an important institution in Scotland’s future, playing a key role as we look to recover from COVID-19, respond to our ageing demographics and build a more accessible, inclusive society.
The consultation paper does not specifically address the transport needs of people who access, provide or rely on social care. However, we believe it is vital that the Scottish Government begins to consider these questions now and engages with the community transport sector to develop and improve its plans.
The community transport sector plays a critical role in supporting the social care system and reducing barriers to access to social care for people and communities across Scotland. The majority of community transport providers in Scotland serve older people (85%) and disabled people (53%) or provide services to help people access health (61%) and social care (56%) – yet they are often not funded or supported by any public body to do so.
Community transport providers are at the heart of their communities, understand the transport needs of local people and should be key partners for the National Care Service’s local delivery boards in the planning, commissioning and delivery of the transport services which people and communities require
Community transport services tackle exclusion, isolation and loneliness and help people to live happier, healthier and more independent lives for longer in their own homes and communities. It also reduces long-term costs for the social care system through prevention and early intervention
The National Care Service should define high-quality standards for accessible, inclusive transport community health and social care in Scotland
Accessible, inclusive transport in their local community should be considered an integral part of the holistic care needs of service users and their care packages
Health, social care and transport services should be aligned. A more joined-up, strategic approach is required, backed by long-term planning, stable public funding and genuine partnership working between the NHS, the National Care Service and the community transport sector
What do you think of our response? What could be CT’s role in this new landscape? How should CTA work with the Scottish Government and the new National Care Service once it is established?
Please feel free to get in touch with me via firstname.lastname@example.org. I’d love to hear your ideas and feedback.
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