National Care Service Bill published

National Care Service Bill published

The National Care Service (Scotland) Bill was introduced to the Scottish Parliament on 20 June 2022.

The Bill allows Scottish Ministers to transfer social care responsibility from local authorities to a new, national service.  This could include adult and children’s services, as well as areas such as justice social work.  Scottish Ministers will also be able to transfer healthcare functions from the NHS to the National Care Service.

The Bill has been accompanied by the National Care Service: statement of benefits.

The aims of the Bill are to

  • support people in their own homes or among family, friends and community wherever possible, with seamless transitions between services;
  • create a charter of rights and responsibilities for social care, with a robust complaints and redress process;
  • introduce rights to breaks for unpaid carers
  • introduce visiting rights for residents living in adult care homes, giving legal force to Anne’s Law
  • ensure fair employment practices and national pay bargaining for the social care workforce;
  • focus on prevention and early intervention before people’s needs escalate;
  • create a new National Social Work Agency to promote training and development, provide national leadership and set and monitor standards in social work.

Humza Yousaf, Cabinet Secretary for Health and Social Care, described the creation of the National Care Service as “the most ambitious reform of public services since the creation of the NHS.”

ELCAP is taking a close interest in the development of the National Care Service and the benefits it can deliver for the individuals we support, our staff and our community.

ELCAP Chief Executive, Paul White, said:

“We welcome the Bill’s ambitions in relation to co-production, early intervention, fair work and human rights and look forward to investment in these areas.

But legislative and structural changes alone will not transform lives.  We need to consider the purpose of social care and support – seeing it as a springboard, not a safety net – and develop new relationships and ways of working.  The focus must be on ensuring our citizens get the support they need to live the lives they choose.

Everyone, no matter what their individual support needs, should be able to live to their full potential and be an active and valued member of our community.”