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by Louise Wilson
01 February 2022
Over 1,000 responses to National Care Service consultation

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Over 1,000 responses to National Care Service consultation

There is a “real hunger for change” after the first National Care Service consultation received 1,300 responses, the Scottish Government has said.

Views were sought on reforms to social care between August and November last year.

It follows the publication of an independent review into social care, which recommended the establishment of a National Care Service to deliver social care, akin to the National Health Service.

The government has committed to setting up to new service by 2026.

Social care minister Kevin Stewart said: “It is clear there is a real hunger for change, and many areas where the system can be improved, and that people want to see this change happen as quickly as possible.

“We will take all the views on board and I will publish an independent analysis of the responses shortly.”

A number of the responses come from individuals with experience of the care system, as well as organisations which represent them.

Health boards, councils, trade unions and care workers were also among the responders.

The government will now analyse these views as it looks to shape the structure of the new service.

It has already commissioned some private companies to help develop the proposals, including for data and IT services.

Nicola Sturgeon announced the independent report in September 2020 following the deaths of just under 2,000 care homes residents from coronavirus.

In the foreword of that report, chair Derek Feeley said a new system would require “structural change” and a different “narrative” around social care to deliver preventative and wellbeing services rather than crisis support.

A number of organisations, most notably council umbrella body COSLA, have expressed concern that a National Care Service would lead to centralisation and a lack of accountability.

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