To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what estimate he has made of the gap between demand and funding for health services for disabled children and their families; what steps he is taking to address any such gap; and if he will make a statement.
25 July 2018
The commissioning of health and social care services for children with disabilities is the responsibility of clinical commissioning groups and local authorities respectively. Local commissioners are best placed to assess the needs of the local population, and to mitigate any shortfalls.
In 2014, the Government introduced a new statutory framework requiring local authorities and clinical commissioning groups to commission jointly services for children with special educational needs and disability, across health, social care and education. Since 2014, £327 million has been given to local areas to support implementation of these new arrangements, in addition to the high needs budget for placements for pupils with complex special educational needs which is £6 billion this year, the highest it has ever been.
Every local area’s arrangements are being inspected jointly by Ofsted and the Care Quality Commission, in addition to their role inspecting providers.
There are no plans to establish a disabled children’s fund. Funding for the National Health Service will grow on average by 3.4% in real terms each year from 2019/20 to 2023/24; by 2023/24 the NHS budget will increase by over £20 billion a year in real terms compared with today.