“Nasty party style” politics rears its head over funding of national care service

BMJ 2010; 340 doi: (Published 18 February 2010) Cite this as: BMJ 2010;340:c974
  1. Zosia Kmietowicz
  1. 1London

    England’s health secretary, Andy Burnham, is set to meet politicians and other interested parties on Friday 19 February to discuss the future of social care in England, after a heated debate last week ended in his Conservative counterpart refusing to attend unless a key proposal from Labour was dropped.

    Eighteen charities, including Carers UK, the Alzheimer’s Society, and Macmillan Cancer Support, signed a letter to the Times on 13 February calling for an end to the “party-political squabbling” that has dominated the debate on social care in the past week ( They said it was time for a consensus on social care reform that “delivers long-term solutions that will not be reversed by changes in government or in the economic climate.”

    Debate about how to fund long term care of elderly people has been smouldering since 1999, when a royal commission recommended that personal care and …

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