The King’s Fund’s recent report, ‘Making our health and care systems fit for an ageing population’, reveals that the UK’s health and social care services are failing to meet the needs of an ageing population. The report urges a swift remodelling of the system to co-ordinate elderly care around an individual’s needs rather than a disease, with the emphasis on providing support to allow elderly people to live independently for as long as possible.
Ready for recommendations
The report’s recommendations include the provision of services which will enable elderly people suffering from stable long-term conditions to live a better standard of life, and improved collaboration between social and home care services and the NHS, to support patients after they leave hospital.
This report comes hot on the heels of Age UK’s recent report warning of a ‘disastrous’ elderly care crisis in the UK. The charity revealed spending for England’s social care service had dropped by 15.4% over the last 4 years, despite increased demand, restricting access to social care services for many.
Putting the elderly at risk
Caroline Abrahams, AGE UK’s charity director, commented: “The figures we have uncovered in this report are catastrophic. Older people who need help and are now not getting it are being placed at significant risk.”
David Oliver, one of the King’s Fund’s visiting fellows said: “The health and care systems have a long way to go to adapt to the twin challenge of an ageing population and tighter funding.”