Health secretary Matt Hancock has rejected reports that the social care green paper has been shelved due to government preparations for a no-deal Brexit.
The Times reported this morning an unnamed minister as saying adult social care reform was a “likely casualty” of the cabinet’s decision yesterday to speed up preparations across Whitehall for the possibility that the government would fail to reach an agreement on Brexit with the European Union.
Responding to a tweet highlighting the story this morning from Chris Ham, chief executive of the The King’s Fund, Mr Hancock said: “Don’t recognise this at all. Putting finishing touches on the Social Care Green Paper ready for publication in the New Year”.
Don’t recognise this at all. Putting finishing touches on the Social Care Green Paper ready for publication in the New Year— Matt Hancock (@MattHancock) December 19, 2018
The green paper, which will include options for future funding, was announced by chancellor Philip Hammond in the 2017 March Budget and planned for the following autumn.
In November last year, the government said it intended to publish the document in the summer. This deadline slipped to the autumn before last week’s postponement to next year.
This all comes after the government yesterday allocated about £2bn to different departments to prepare for Brexit.
The five biggest allocations were handed to the Home Office (£480m), the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (£410m), Her Majesty’s Revenue & Customs (£375m), the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (£190m) and the Department for International Trade (£128m).
The Department of Health & Social Care received £50m while the Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government received £35m.
All funding is for 2019-20, and is for core Brexit activity including deal and no deal preparations. It follows an earlier £1.5bn allocation announced in the spring statement for the 2018-19 year.