The debate on the future funding of adult social care in Wales has failed to connect with the younger population who will end up paying for it, according to a senior figure in the Welsh Local Government Association (WLGA).
Speaking to Community Care, Beverley Frowen, director for social services and health improvementat the WLGA, said events held by the Welsh government as part of its consultation on its green paper, had mostly been attended by older people.
She added: “The whole payment for care debate has missed most of the population and it has missed the people who are going to pay for it.” She went on to say the consultation events had mostly been attended by older people.
Consultation closed on the Welsh green paper,Paying for Care in Wales. at the end of February.
Its proposals mirror those in the UK government’s green paper last year on the future funding of care in England.
These include a national system of eligibility for care, replacing local discretion, and part-funding of the personal care costs of all eligible users by the state, potentially paid for by using money currently spent on attendance allowance.
The remainder of the funding would be met by individuals themselves, either directly or through compulsory or voluntary insurance systems.
The WLGA’s response to the consultation criticised the use of the term “national care service” to characterise the proposals, preferring the term “national care guarantee”.
It said a guarantee “emphasises that every citizen has the same entitlement to care services, but recognises that how the service is delivered will depend on local circumstance and local choice, reinforced by local accountability”.
The concerns were also expressed by the Association of Directors of Social Services Cymru in its consultation response saying a balance between local and national objectives had to be struck be struck.
Both WLGA and ADSS Cymru refused to offer a preferred funding model saying the detail was not available in the consultation paper to assess the financial impact for local authorities.
The WLGA also expressed concern about the possible abolition of attendance allowance.