Ahead of today’s Budget statement, the national disability charity, United Response, has called on the Government to use this opportunity – the last before the General Election – to address the funding shortfall facing social care.

United Response’s interim chief executive, Shān Nicholas, said:

“As an organisation providing support for over 2,000 vulnerable people with learning disabilities, mental health needs, autism and dementia, we remain incredibly concerned about the lack of funding available to meet people’s care needs, and the long-term impact that this will have on their health and wellbeing.

“If a person’s care needs are not met at an early stage, then those needs are likely to increase. This is not only detrimental to people’s wellbeing but also does not make economic sense; as people end up in crisis, they are often forced to access more costly – and already overstretched – health services. Any plans to join to up health and social care services must be accompanied by adequate funding for social care, otherwise they are set to fail.

“We would urge the Government to use this last Budget to make social care a priority, and to address the concerns of the millions of people who will rely on social care at some point during their lives.”