Almost 90% of councils no longer offer care to adults with ‘low’ or ‘moderate’ needs.
That finding has come from the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services’ (Adass) budget survey, which showed there had been a 17 percentage point increase in councils withdrawing these services over four years.
In 2014-15, it found 89% of councils responsible for adult care confine this service to people assessed with ‘substantial’ or ‘critical’ needs, compared with only 72% in 2010-11.
Although adult social care had made budget cuts of 26% over four years, Adass said overall spending cuts in the same period meant it now absorbed 35% of council budgets, against 30% in 2010-11.
Adass president David Pearson said in a statement: “It’s great that people are living longer and that many of those are living healthily. But the number of over-85s is set to double and we know for certain that 25% of them have, or will have, dementia.
“Local authorities have done much to manage this increased need creatively, and with fewer resources.
“Unfortunately, the cuts have also meant that we have had to raise eligibility thresholds.”
Only 2% of total public expenditure went to social care and “we needs must decide, as a nation, to give priority to redressing this position”, he added.