The Welsh Government has announced a new £48m funding package to support social care services in Wales.
Of the funding, £40m will be given to local authorities and will be used to help the social care sector deal with ongoing challenges caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
Last month, Caerphilly County Borough Council was one of a number of councils to warn of staff shortages in the community and social care sectors due to the effects of the pandemic.
The shortages are due to the impact of the move to Alert Level Zero – such as staff summer leave, self-isolation, equipment shortages and increased numbers of people being discharged from hospital and needing care.
The remaining £8m will go towards extending the carers support fund and tackling loneliness in older people, as well as investing in the social care workforce’s wellbeing and in residential services for care-experienced children.
Making the announcement, the Welsh Government’s Deputy Minister for Social Services, Julie Morgan MS, said: “We place huge value on social care in Wales and we ask a lot of the sector. It is facing significant pressures as a result of the pandemic and – just like our NHS staff – the workforce is exhausted from working so hard for so long.
“This new funding recognises the challenges the sector is facing and will help to address some of the financial pressures it faces. It also includes new funding to invest in priority areas to improve services, in line with our ambitions and commitments.
“We will continue supporting social care in Wales and, as we recover from the pandemic, will build a strong and resilient social care sector.”
Welsh Conservative Shadow Social Services Minister, Gareth Davies MS, welcomed the funding but said it will “sadly not alleviate the problems that have been allowed to mount in Wales’ social care system”.
Additional reporting by the Local Democracy Reporting Service
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