Support for carers thin on the ground

Just one-third of carers assessed for services are receiving dedicated support, government figures have revealed.

The Community Care Statistics 2004-5 show that 65,000 of the 194,000 assessed were receiving “carer specific” services, with another 79,000 receiving information only.

The Commission for Social Care Inspection estimates that more than 900,000 carers put in more than 50 hours’ caring every week.

The figures also reveal that the number of adults receiving community care services in 2004-5 declined slightly, to 1.45 million, after rising every year, by a total of 10 per cent, from 2000-1 to 2003-4.

There was also a 2.8 per cent fall  in the number of adults in residential or nursing care arranged by social services. The total fell to 356,000.

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