‘Action this day’ as Boris Johnson raises hopes on social care reform – The Yorkshire Post says

THE urgency surrounding the country’s social-care crisis is reflected by the fact Boris Johnson actually cited this issue in his first speech as Prime Minister.

Boris Johnson cited social care as a priority in his first speech as Prime Minister.

On the steps of 10 Downing Street, he pledged to “fix the crisis in social care once and for all with a clear plan we have prepared to give every older person the dignity and security they deserve”.

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And the spirit of his words has been welcomed from campaigners like Scarborough’s Mike Padgham, who has regularly highlighted the issue in The Yorkshire Post, to Mike Proctor, chief executive of York Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust, who is speaking out at the end of a 44-year career.

Matt Hancock (centre_ has been retained as Health and Social Care Secretary.

Like the 1.4 million people receiving sub-standard care, and the army of carers whose needs are invariably neglected, they, too, have become exasperated by the absence of significant policy progress.

They also know that this vacuum, coupled with the after-effects of a decade of austerity, is contributing to a rise in so-called delayed discharges – when elderly patients cannot be released from hospital because of insufficient care and support in their community.

Will Boris Johnson deliver his pledge on social care?

And, because of this, social care – barely mentioned at the outset of the Tory leadership hustings – rapidly rose up the agenda to the extent that even Mr Johnson could no longer ignore it.

Like so many issues, Mr Johnson can expect to be judged by the high objectives he has set for himself and his country – even more so after choosing to retain Matt Hancock as Health and Social Care Secretary.

Given that Mr Hancock has already been in post for a year and still not published the Green Paper the Tories promised two years ago, Mr Johnson now needs to inject some urgency into this issue.

To paraphrase one of his predecessors and heroes, Winston Churchill: “Action this day.”