Lib Dems warn against letting ministers take over care services

As a new consultation opens on the future of care services, Scottish Liberal Democrat health spokesperson Alex Cole-Hamilton MSP has today warned against centralising services and putting them in the hands of the same Scottish Government ministers who oversaw the discharge of untested and covid-positive people into care homes during the pandemic.

The SNP promised in their plan for the first 100 days of the new parliament to start a formal consultation on legislation to centralise care services. This consultation is set to be launched on Monday 9th August.

Instead, Scottish Liberal Democrats are proposing new national entitlements to drive up the quality of care for users and would prioritise the introduction of new national fair work standards for staff to improve their pay, conditions and career progression.

Mr Cole-Hamilton MSP said: 

"I want to give people control over their care and accountability over the organisations who deliver it. 

“The Scottish Government’s proposals cut local accountability out of the process and give more power to ministers to dictate how things must be done. This is the same ministers whose disastrous decisions saw thousands of untested and covid-positive patients discharged from hospitals and into care homes with tragic consequences, despite warnings from care homes themselves.

“Rather than building a new organisation at the beck-and-call of ministers, we should be focusing on improving care with national standards and entitlements for users and by ensuring that the hard work of staff is recognised with a step change in pay and conditions. 

“We have seen how previous SNP exercises in centralisation fair with the police and economic development, let’s not repeat those expensive mistakes with the care sector." 

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