Health, adult social care and ageing bulletin: May 2022

Having trouble viewing this email? View it as a Web page.


LGA Logo with padding 2019

Health, adult social care and ageing bulletin

May 2022

Twitter IconLinkedIn IconFacebook IconYoutube icon

Dear colleagues,

On 11 May, I chaired a national LGA webinar entitled ‘Understanding health and care reforms: opportunities and implications for local government’. Nearly 400 people joined the event to hear from our expert speakers on how such a broad and complex reform agenda can be pieced together and made sense of. We will be writing this up in due course and posting our report online. Thinking just about the adult social care reforms, colleagues – both speakers and delegates – were all agreed about the sheer scale of the changes the sector is facing. On charging reform, councils are preparing for the cap on care costs, changes to the financial means test thresholds, fair rate of care and section 18(3) of the Care Act whereby self-funders can request that their council arranges their care at the council-funded rate. On system reform, the December white paper set out a range of policies, which will also require input, time and energy. In particular, adult social care assurance will mark a significant change. Under new legislation, the Care Quality Commission (CQC) has a new duty to independently review and assess the performance of councils’ adult social care duties and the Secretary of State has legal powers for statutory intervention in cases where a council is judged to be failing, or has failed, to discharge its duties.

Each of the reforms is challenging on its own in terms of the capacity required to make them happen. Taken together, to such an ambitious timescale and with concerns about the adequacy of funding for them, the task of implementation is made considerably harder. And of course, the reforms do little, if nothing, to address the significant and serious pressures adult social care is facing right now. One need only look at the latest ADASS survey of the steps councils are taking to manage in the face of those pressures to see, in the starkest terms, the consequences of an underfunded and under-staffed system.

We hear loud and clear from councils that they are concerned about the situation I have described above. We share those concerns, which is why we’re being clear to Ministers and officials that: immediate pressures need to be tackled as a priority; the funding for care reform needs to be kept under close and regular review (with additional resources made available as necessary); the timetable for reform needs to be similarly scrutinised at regular intervals to ensure what is being asked of councils is achievable. We have been, and continue to be, extremely active in this space – with our member councils, with Government and the Department for Health and Social Care (DHSC), and with national partners. Some of this work is public facing. For instance, we have produced detailed briefings for councils on the Government’s September ‘Build Back Better’ plan and its social care white paper, and compiled a comprehensive section on adult social care in our Spending Review submission. We also make our views known to Parliament through debate and Bill briefings and written and oral evidence to select committees. Just last month, our deputy chief executive, Sarah Pickup, gave important evidence to the Levelling Up Housing and Communities Select Committee on adult social care funding. We are working on two further important written evidence submissions for parliamentary inquiries on the social care workforce and the planning and delivery of care services. We also respond to numerous media stories as well as proactively lead the news agenda, such as with our recent story setting out our, and councils’, concerns about the adequacy of funding for the Government’s charging reforms.

But not everything we do is public facing. We have been fighting councils’ corner on numerous aspects of the social care reform agenda behind the scenes with Ministers and officials. For example, we have written in strong terms, both individually and with partners, setting out our concerns that the Government has underestimated the cost of certain parts of their charging reforms. Similarly, we’ve sent correspondence setting out the risks and challenges posed by adult social care assurance and what we do and don’t want to see as that develops further. We are part of regular meetings with DHSC, the CQC and ADASS to move this work forward. In meetings with senior figures we continue to make similar points, underlining the concern that what the Government is asking of councils – to the timetable they are requiring – is verging on impossible. It of course remains to be seen what, if any, mitigating steps the Government may consider, but we are pushing hard for this to be a central part of the Government’s thinking. Evidence matters hugely in this respect and we are working closely with councils on different areas of the reform agenda to help demonstrate why we think the Government is underestimating certain costs and missing potential impacts that could have serious ramifications for councils and the people they serve.

We will continue to do all we can – both publicly and privately – to raise the concerns we know councils have about adult social care reform and exert pressure on the Government to prepare mitigating steps. We remain driven by the desire to ensure councils have the resources and capacity they need to be sustainable in the short- and long-term, as well as successfully deliver on the reform agenda. If we can get this right, we stand the best chance of ensuring that people who draw on care and support are able to live the lives they want to lead.


Cllr David Fothergill
Chairman, LGA Community Wellbeing Board


Induction Session for adult social care lead members and health and wellbeing board chairs

Aimed at new chairs of health and wellbeing boards and new portfolio holders with responsibility for adult social care and health, this free induction session will explore current policy issues, look at the challenges for high profile leadership roles, and relate these to your local context. This in-person event takes place at the LGA on Thursday 23 June 2022, from 10.30am to 3.00pm. For more information and to make a booking please contact

'Must knows' for lead members for adult social care

The 'Must knows' are a long-standing source of information and support and focuses on the key issues facing members with responsibility for adult social care. They are updated on a rolling basis, with a revised online publication on safeguarding recently published.

What is the role of the school nurse?

School nurses lead the Healthy Child Programme: 5-19 and are essential in ensuring every child has the best start in life. The LGA has published What is the role of a school nurse? which explores the full range of interventions which school nurses can offer and their impact on key government priorities such as reducing child health inequalities, emotional wellbeing and mental health, encouraging healthy weight and childhood immunisations.

Open consultation: Mental health and wellbeing plan

The Government has published a discussion paper and a ‘call for evidence’ to support the development of a new 10 year Mental Health Plan. It is seeking views from the public and organisations on what we can all do to improve mental health and wellbeing. The consultation covers a breadth of issues which impact mental health, from prevention through to acute mental health care. Closing date is 7 July 2022.

Liberty Protection Safeguards

The Department of Health and Social Care and Ministry of Justice have launched a consultation on proposed changes to the Mental Capacity Act 2005 Code of Practice and the Liberty Protection Safeguards implementation and regulations, with a deadline for responses of 7 July. We are keen to hear from councils on the proposed changes to inform our own response. Please share your views via Councils also have a source of information and expertise via regional leads. You may also register your interest in attending events for people with lived experience during the consultation period.

Health and Social Care Levy

As the Health and Social Care Levy is introduced, DHSC’s £500 million to develop the adult social care workforce will be dedicated to improving recruitment, retention, progression, and staff wellbeing in social care. We remain concerned that the £5.4 billion allocated for social care reforms across this Spending Review period is likely to be inadequate, risking the delivery of the reforms as well as further exacerbating existing pressures and wider under-funding of care and support.

First tranche of drug treatment funding

Health and Social Care Secretary Sajid Javid announced the first 50 local authorities across England to receive extra funding in 2022/23 to go towards improving access to drug and alcohol addiction treatment and increasing the capacity of services. The second tranche of enhanced funding for the next 50 local authorities will follow in 2023/24 and the third will be in 2024/25.

Hospital discharge and community support guidance

DHSC’s Hospital discharge and community support guidance sets out how health and care systems should support the safe and timely discharge of people who no longer need to stay in hospital. The guidance applies to NHS bodies and councils exercising health and adult social care functions in England and should be used to inform local service planning and delivery.

Support for Integrated Care Partnership leaders

The NHS Confederation and the LGA are planning support for the leaders of Integrated Care Partnerships (ICP) and are proposing, a national ICP Leaders network to discuss issues of common concern, share good practice and shape policy development on ICPs. In the meantime, support on establishing the ICP and bespoke support for local health and care systems is available through, the joint LGA, NHS Confederation and NHS Providers Leading Integration Peer Support Programme. For more information contact

East Midlands HWB and NHS Trust Chairs Development Network

In the East Midlands region there is a thriving network of HWB chairs, lead members in adult social care, NHS Trust and other NHS chairs. The network looks at ways in which local authorities and NHS organisations are working together. Topics for the June meeting include tackling discharges and district council engagement with Integrated Care Systems. This virtual meeting takes place on Thursday 9 June 2.00pm – 3.30pm. Please register your interest at

Suicide prevention sector-led improvement offer

A few spaces are still available for councils and partners interested in receiving bespoke support to improve their suicide prevention offer as part of the ADPH/LGA Suicide Prevention sector-led improvement (SLI) Programme. To find out more about the programme and application process, visit Suicide Prevention SLI Offer 21/22 or email

Call for best practice examples: women’s health

Is your council running or commissioning any innovative programmes aimed at improving women’s health and wellbeing? The Government is expected to shortly publish its landmark new Women’s Health Strategy for England, which will seek to set out an ambitious and positive vision for the health and wellbeing of all women across the country. We are interested in finding out about any programmes councils may currently be running to improve or promote women’s health and wellbeing in their local communities. If so, please email any best practice examples of up to 250 words to by Friday 27 May.

Call for best practice examples in early years workforce

The Best Start for Life: a vision for the 1,001 critical days set out the Government’s vision for the early years and six areas for action to improve the health outcomes of all babies in England. The Start for Life Team is keen to build on what is already happening when considering design of the workforce trials to support delivery of the £300million Start for Life and Family Hubs funding for enhanced services and would like to hear from local authorities via a survey: Call Out to Local Authorities - Best Practice Sharing 0-2.

The survey closes on Thursday 26 May. Please include the name of your council in question one. For any further questions, please email

Call to Directors of Public Health and public health teams

The National Institute of Health Research is asking Directors of Public Health to submit an expression of interest to identify specific initiatives within their localities that will benefit from research or evaluation input. Read examples of initiatives currently being evaluated.

This call for research happens twice per year and feeds the PHIRST academic teams that NIHR fund. The process of proposing an initiative is kept simple with an online form. The deadline is 12 September 2022, 1.00pm.

A webinar is being held on 26 May where the NIHR Team will provide background and practical details of the application process. Book your place on NIHR Public Health Intervention Responsive Studies Teams.


New adult social care infection control guidance

Infection prevention and control in adult social care: COVID-19 supplement sets out how to reduce the spread of COVID-19 in adult social care settings in England. The guidance applies to adult social care settings and services in England from 4 April 2022. It should be used alongside the infection prevention and control (IPC) resource for adult social care and the adult social care testing guidance, which sets out the testing regime for staff and residents.

Updated symptom list

The NHS has added nine new symptoms to the list of officially recognised COVID-19 symptoms. These include a blocked or runny nose; shortness of breath; fatigue; aches; headache; sore throat; loss of appetite; diarrhoea; feeling sick or being sick. Guidance: People with symptoms of a respiratory infection including COVID-19 advises people with any of these symptoms, who have high temperature or do not feel well enough to go to work or carry out normal activities, to stay at home and avoid contact with other people.

Vaccinations for five to 11-year-olds

The NHS has started rolling out vaccinations for all children aged five to 11. Almost five million children in this age group are eligible for two doses of the COVID-19 vaccine. Vaccination appointments can be booked through the online booking service or by calling 119. There are also vaccine walk-ins across the country which families can find through the NHS grab a jab website.


Public health in local government: celebrating 10 years of transformation

Must Know: is your council meeting the needs of autistic people?

Must Know: How do you know your council is doing all it can to safeguard adults?

Must Know: long COVID - What is the role of local government?

Sector support offer for councils

What is the role of a school nurse?

Shopping for health: putting health assets into the heart of local communities

Guidance: Restricting promotions of products high in fat, sugar or salt by location and by volume price: implementation guidance

New calorie labelling rules come into force to improve nation’s health

Call for evidence for new 10-year plan to improve mental health


A whole systems approach to promoting healthier weight
Thursday 19 May 2022, 9.30am–3.30pm | Virtual

Prevention and Admission Avoidance: Reducing preventable admissions to hospital and achieving better outcomes for people
Thursday 26 May, 2.00-3.00pm | Virtual

NIHR Public Health Intervention Responsive Studies Teams (PHIRST)
Thursday 26 May 2022, 1.30pm – 3.30pm | Virtual

The Community Mental Health Framework and local government
8 June 2022, 2.00pm - 3.30pm | Virtual

Childhood Obesity Trailblazer Programme – Final Assembly
8 June 2022, 10.00am - 12.30pm | Virtual

LGA Annual Conference and Exhibition 2022
28 June 2022 - 30 June 2022 | Harrogate 

Transforming care digitally: Anticipatory care planning
Monday 4 July 2022, 12:00pm to 2:00pm | Virtual


LGA statement on Queen’s Speech: Mental Health Act Reform Bill
10 May 2022

LGA responds to Drug Strategy funding allocations
13 April 2022

NHS Confederation: NHS leaders and staff risk being abandoned by the Government unless new ‘living with COVID’ plan is delivered
9 April 2022

LGA responds to government guidance on the Fair Cost of Care
25 March 2022


Health and Care Act

The Health and Care Act 2022 received Royal Assent and became an Act of Parliament on 28 April 2022. The LGA supports the clear focus on improving community health and wellbeing through greater integration between the NHS and local government in the Act and will be producing an explainer for councils of the Health and Care Act which will be available on our website in the coming weeks.

Smokefree 2030

We briefed MPs ahead of a debate on progress towards the Government’s smokefree 2030 ambition. Opening the debate, LGA Vice-President Bob Blackman MP (Conservative, Harrow East) highlighted that Javed Khan’s review into tobacco control has been delayed until the middle of May, but urged the Government to commit to introduce all the recommendations of the review when published to achieve a smokefree 2030.

Adult Social Care Committee

The Adult Social Care Committee took evidence from Kirsty Woodward of Ageing Without Children, and Ian Loynes of the SPECTRUM Centre for Independent Living. The session focused on supporting people who do not have children and require care. Ms Woodward highlighted that people without children often fall into the care system much earlier than others and at a lower level of need, due to the lack of care options available. 

Queen's Speech: Reforming the Mental Health Act

The Government announced in the Queen's Speech on 10 April that it will publish draft legislation to reform the Mental Health Act. The Government stated that the purpose of the new Act is to:

  • Ensure patients suffering from mental health conditions have greater control over their treatment and receive the dignity and respect they deserve.
  • Make it easier for people with learning disabilities and autism to be discharged from hospital.

The LGA strongly supports the reform of the Mental Health Act. We welcome the ambition to achieve meaningful change for people living with severe mental illness, and the central role of local government in supporting this. The new Mental Health Act will have significant resource implications for councils which need to be fully funded on a long-term basis. We are working with Government to plan implementation of the new Act and identify any new burdens arising.

first magazine

First logo padding top and rhs

first is the LGA's membership magazine, distributed to around 18,000 councillors and local authority chief executives in England and Wales.


In this issue:

Decorative banner