Saturday, 7 July 2012

Liverpool Care Pathway – The Attractive Option?

Does the Liverpool Care Pathway have a place and a purpose..?

This is The Telegraph -

Councils will have 'no money' for main services by 2020

Councils will no longer be able to pay for any libraries, parks, leisure centres or fixing potholes in roads by the end of this decade because of a catastrophic funding crisis, they warned today.

6:00AM BST 26 Jun 2012

Financial estimates carried out for the leaders of every major local authority in England and Wales show that funding for services used by millions of people will be shrunk by up to 90 per cent by 2020.

Heavy cuts in public spending combined with a soaring bill for care for the elderly and legal commitments such as rubbish collection will almost wipe out the budget for all but the most essential services, it concludes.
People will have to be given the choice between soaring council taxes or “drastic” cuts in local amenities unless there is a radical overhaul in how local government is organised, it warns.
The dire warning comes in a report for the Local Government Association which speaks for more than 300 councils in England and Wales.
“Simply put, the ‘business as usual’ service offer appears not to be possible for the end of the decade,” it warns.
Even after cutting more than 200,000 jobs, curbing executive pay and slashing spending on services, the figures suggest that a funding crisis will be unavoidable, the report finds.
“It is simply the case that the financial outlook for councils will not pay for the services they currently provide by the later years of the decade,” it concludes.
Accountants calculated that when the likely total income and outgoings councils in England and Wales will face by the end of the decade are taken into account there will be a collective £16.5 billion shortfall – or 29 per cent.
Income including from council tax, fees and the annual grant from central government would fall from £50.8 billion last year to £41.2 billion in 2019 to 2020.
And despite making cuts in the last two years and effectively freezing spending until around 2015, outgoings are likely to rise from £50.8 billion last year to £57.8 billion by 2020.
The biggest drain on resources will be the growing cost of funding social care for elderly and disabled people – largely because of the ageing population.
The LCP may look like to be an increasingly attractive option…

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