The Department of Health has denied claims that cancer and dementia research will be at risk because of its commitment to provide free personal care at home for people with high needs.
The government was accused of threatening the research programmes in The Times today when health secretary Andy Burnham disclosed that it would find £60m of the £670m needed to fund its care pledge from NHS research and development budgets.
A department spokesperson said: “We can categorically state that cancer and dementia funding will not be affected.”
She added: “We are now providing more funding than ever for health research. This £1 billion budget is ring-fenced for research.”
A further £50m will come from communications budgets which pay for public health promotions on subjects such as obesity and swine flu. Councils will also be required to make saving totalling £250m to pay for the scheme.
The measure will be introduced under the Personal Care at Home Bill, published today.