Social care and its workforce critical to whole-system progress

Director of the Welsh NHS Confederation Darren Hughes responds to the Social care workforce delivery plan 2024 to 2027.

11 June 2024

Responding to Wales' Social care workforce delivery plan 2024 to 2027, director of the Welsh NHS Confederation Darren Hughes said: 

“NHS leaders will welcome the publication of the Social care workforce delivery plan and appreciate the work that’s gone into developing the plan. 

“The fragility of the social care sector is one of the biggest challenges facing the health and wellbeing of our population. 

“The NHS and social care are inextricably linked. The social care workforce plays a crucial role in supporting people remain independent for longer, preventing hospital admissions and supporting faster, safer discharges home. 

“The sector plays a critical role in enabling the NHS to deliver safe and timely care, with delayed transfers of care out of hospital having a huge impact on patient flow through the whole healthcare system. 

“This includes deconditioning of patients needing to be discharged, long waiting lists for those needing treatment, the capacity for people to be seen quickly in our emergency departments and the ability to dispatch ambulances to both treat people in the community and bring them to hospital for emergency care. 

“We know the health and care workforce is key to delivering good quality care to those who need it. That’s why fair pay, terms and conditions for the social care workforce are vital to improving retention and minimising vacancies, ensuring the sustainability of health and social care. 

“Unless we collectively make considerable progress in this area, the NHS and social care services will struggle to provide timely care.”