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‘Extra £2bn’ for social care

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Funding amounting to an extra £2bn over the next four years is being made available for councils and the NHS to meet the increasing costs of social care.

The spending review has revealed the NHS has been told to set aside cash that will grow to £1bn by 2014-15 to pay for the further integration of health and social care services such as reblement to boost long-term efficiency savings.

Meanwhile, a further £1bn in extra funding is to be made available to council social services departments over the same period through the Department of Health’s Personal Social Services (PSS) grant, the Treasury said.

It said the funding would be merged into local government formula grant “to reduce administrative burdens and increase flexibility for local authorities”.

Supporting documentation showed that £800m of the extra NHS funding would be made available next year, rising by £100m in 2012-13 and to £1.1bn in 2013-14. The cash is understood to come from health-service capital savings.

For the merged PSS funding, £1.3bn was budgeted for in the current year, rising to £2.4bn in 2013-14 and the same figure in the following year.

Chancellor George Osborne told MPs that the social care funding was aimed at stopping elderly people and the vulnerable from “falling between the cracks in the system”.

The Treasury said the funding would “enable local authorities to deliver the necessary efficiency savings, reforms and service improvements that will release savings and put social care services on a stable footing for the entire spending review period”.

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