Rise in social services spending

Gross expenditure by local authorities in England on personal
social services was just over £12 billion in 1999-2000,
according to figures published by the Department of Health last
week – an increase of 11 per cent on the previous year.

The figures show services for children and older people
accounted for nearly three-quarters of the total spend. In
addition, nearly half of the expenditure was on residential
provision and 35 per cent on day and domiciliary care.

Expenditure on independent residential and nursing homes
increased by 12 per cent on the previous year and has nearly
trebled since 1994-5. In contrast, expenditure on local
authority-run homes has fallen by 10 per cent over the same
five-year period.

Meanwhile, the DoH published its annual report analysing the
government’s performance and setting out strategies and expenditure
for the next three years.

Most of its public service agreement targets are on course or
achieved, although the aim of improving the educational attainment
of children leaving care has slipped. Last year, 30 per cent of
children left care with a single GCSE or GNVQ qualification
compared with a target of 50 per cent by 2001 and 75 per cent by

The report also sets out personal social services revenue
provision for 2001-2. A total of £9.8 billion will be
available for social services, most of which will be distributed to
authorities, with the remainder comprising specific and special

For more information go to www.doh.gov.uk/public/sb0111.htm
and www.doh.gov.uk/dohreport/report2001/dr2001.html

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