Adult social care funding: a local or national responsibility

Document type
Smith, Neil Amin; Phillips, David; Simpson, Polly
Institute for Fiscal Studies
Date of publication
22 March 2018
Briefing Note; BN227
Social Work, Social Care and Social Services, Health Services, Housing and Homelessness, Children and Young People
Social welfare
Material type

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This briefing note argues that ongoing reforms to local government finance risk a growing funding gap for adult social care and conflict with efforts to provide consistent and high-quality care services across the country.

The government plans to abolish general grant funding for councils from 2020, meaning councils will depend on council tax and business rates for the vast majority of their general funding. But revenues from these taxes are unlikely to keep pace with the rising costs of adult social care services, leaving councils with increasingly tough choices about which services to prioritise.

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