Care reform: there is no ‘do nothing’ option

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The post-war settlement established the NHS as a comprehensive system of health care, free at the point of use, while the social care system remained means-tested and based on need. This settlement created a divide between health and social care which still exists today.

Over 65 years of social, technological and demographic change later, this system has not kept up. Demand for health and social care services is increasing, with many more people living longer and with long-term conditions.

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