Government urged to provide more training and better career paths for care workers

The government has been urged to provide more training and better career paths for care workers as part of a fundamental reform of the social care system.

The plea came as the Department of Health announced it would spend £67m refurbishing 7,000 care homes across England to improve the quality of life for older people in care homes.

Charities Age Concern and Help the Aged said the social care system needed a total overhaul to improve life quality, addressing long-term problems of high turnover and low staff morale.

An Age Concern spokesman told Personnel Today: “The baby-boom generation is living longer and there will be more people in care. So the government needs to fundamentally reform the social care system.

“Training and pay for care staff is really central to that reform – the general low quality of care jobs is possibly the main issue.”

Annie Stevenson, senior policy adviser at Help the Aged, said: “It is crucial to recognise that investment in the care home sector workforce is also vital to lift its status and to improve morale and potential to meet future demands on the service.”

Age Concern expressed concern that by simply throwing money at the system, it “may end up like another NHS”, with money being wasted.

The spokesman added: “£67m is a drop in the ocean for the long term. While the system needs money just to stand still, there needs to be a lot more training and support for staff doing a very difficult job.”

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