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Council expecting to fall short of £67m savings needed in adult social care

A transformation programme to make improvements to adult social care in Nottingham is not expected to deliver the £67m savings required over the next five years.

Nottingham City Council spends much of its budget, around 60 per cent, on adult social care and children’s services.

The costs associated with these services have been increasing, largely due to soaring demand for the services themselves.

Following the collapse of Robin Hood Energy, the Government appointed an improvement board to oversee change at the authority and get it back on track financially.

A number of transformation programmes have been taking place to help put these improvements in place, including in adult social care.

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In 2022/23, the programme delivered savings of £2.79m, over-delivering by £136,000.

But there is now a target to achieve savings of £67m over the next five years between 2022/23 and 2026/27.

According to the council, it is forecast that it will only achieve savings of £54.43m against this target.

The authority says it is looking to address the £12.62m shortfall going forward.

“Adult Health and Social Care is delivering transformation to address challenges of increasing demand, workforce retention and financial pressures,” council documents say.

“In response, the programme of change is focusing on improving service quality, providing better outcomes for citizens and delivering financial savings for the council.”

The council documents, released ahead of a Health and Adult Social Care Scrutiny Committee on October 12, say the authority has been making progress.

By August this year, the council managed to review the care received by 2,398 residents, “a significant increase” from the 750 people on care plans in January.

The council says it has moved 79 people, who are living with mental health support needs and learning disabilities, from residential care into supported living accommodation to better suit their needs.

This is more than twice the number of people moved into supported living as of January.

A new mental health re-enablement service is also in the process of being created “to maximise independence and provide more short-term mental health interventions”.

The service is expected to become operational in April next year.

“Many local authorities are facing similar challenges as demand for Adult Social Care services increase,” council documents add.

“To deliver improved outcomes for citizens and financial savings for the council, good practice and experience from other local authorities shows the focus of change activity to sit within three categories: prevention and short-term interventions, review of longer-term care and support, and increasing independent living settings as an alternative to residential care.”

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