The impact of the NHS’ deficit on Party manifestos

In our last blog we looked at how the political parties were setting out their ambitions for social care reform ahead of the general election. As the election takes place today against the backdrop of the NHS’ and social care’s finances rapidly spiralling out of control, whoever finds themselves in power may well have to reign in their ambitions for social care revolution.

This week has illustrated the extent of the spending problems that these services are facing, with research showing 98 NHS trusts are projected to have a collective shortfall of £759 million this year. Applied to all 240 trusts, this would mean a total deficit of almost £2 billion. This is an unsustainable amount of debt, and the next government will have to tackle this by either increasing its revenue or making sweeping cuts to services’ expenditure. The impact of this on the parties’ proposed social policies from their manifestos could be severe. The Conservatives want to shift more of the social care burden onto local authorities as per the Care Act, but research from Prestige Nursing + Care shows that local authorities’ care responsibilities are likely to become difficult to manage as it is, without additional financial pressures. Furthermore, Labour’s social care policies appear equally difficult to implement in such tough circumstances. Recruiting an extra 5,000 homecare workers is excellent in principle, but seems farfetched given that many NHS frontline staff may have to lose their jobs. Ending the culture of 15-minute visits is another noble ambition, but one that may fall flat on its face with the limited amount of funding available. The Liberal Democrats, Green Party and UKIP all promise some variation of health and social care integration, which we have argued in previous Prestige blogs is an excellent approach to social care policy. However, this needs to be extremely well thought out before forming the basis of a concrete shift in service provision. With both areas stretched to what increasingly looks like breaking point, a costly and bloated integration process would be extremely hard to justify and could divert important resources away from actually delivering care. Perhaps a better policy in the present context would be to maximise the efficiency of the health and social sectors, and not risk fanning the flames further. One solution that the policymakers should explore is to rally the public around bringing some services out of hospitals and in to the community. Many people’s image of the NHS is solely based upon hospital services, which are often expensive and highly bureaucratic. Community based programmes such as homecare can provide affordable and effective solutions to mounting problems.

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What shifts or rotas are available for professional carers?

Our branches have a wide variety of hours and rotas which means it’s possible to find shifts that fit in with your life situation, whether you want a full time role or are just looking for a few hours a week. All that we ask is that you commit to the hours you can do two weeks in advance.

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Six months’ professional care experience is ideal - such as a domiciliary carer, care assistant, homecare worker, support worker or healthcare assistant. However, if you are new to care some branches do offer training leading to care certificates, so please contact the recruitment team to discuss on 0808 239 9716.

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A full clean driving is required for some roles, but not all. Job roles normally state if a driving licence is required, but if you are unsure then please contact the recruitment team on 0808 239 9716.

What pre-employment checks do you do?

To join Prestige Nursing & Care as a professional carer you will be required to apply for a DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service) check, unless you are registered with the update service.

We can help you apply via your local branch. When you work with children and vulnerable adults a DBS check is a legal requirement. Find out more about DBS checks:

We also require two professional references, one of which should be your current or most recent employer.

Finally, you will be required to provide proof of eligibility to work in the UK, NI number, ID and proof of address. Your recruiter will talk you through all requirements and support you all the way.

What training do I need to complete before starting work?

You will need to complete both online e-learning modules and virtual training via Microsoft Teams. This is very flexible and can be completed from home as long as you have a compatible device. Find out more about the training we offer.

Is the training free?

Yes, the training is completely free.

Do you offer regular patterns of work?

Yes, our branches offer a wide variety of hours and shift patterns.

Will I be employed by Prestige Nursing & Care?

You would become a member of our team with a contract for services. You would be eligible for things like SSP and holiday, as well as a NEST workplace pension.

How old do you have to be to work as a carer?

You need to be 18 years old to join our care team and there is no upper age limit.

How often will I get paid?

We pay all our professional carers weekly.