Industry call for fresh approach to social care comms

As the Government proposes changes to social care legislation, PR professionals have called for a new comms approach to the increasingly fragmented sector.

Funding: social care, especially for the elderly, is expensive
Funding: social care, especially for the elderly, is expensive

The Care and Support White Paper, which is expected imminently, follows the Dilnot Commission into funding for the notoriously expensive social care sector.

MHP Health Mandate director Rupert Gowrley said there had been ‘a lack of good comms on social care’, adding that agencies needed to increase their own understanding of the sector via research.

He added: ‘Social care is quite fragmented – it is delivered by many different organisations across the public, third and private sectors, volunteers and families.

‘To communicate effectively, health PR agencies have to take an overarching view of the role of all these organisations.’

James Ford, Grayling MD public sector, health and skills, and previous campaigns officer at Scope, said the sector would benefit from more collective campaigns.

‘PROs in the social care sector keep beating the drum with some individually brilliant, yet ultimately piecemeal results.

‘Ongoing collective action by PROs is required to ensure this policy area is too great a public concern for politicians to leave in the siding any longer.’

A report published earlier this month by MHP Health Mandate – Atlas of Variations in Social Care – highlighted the scale of the variation of provision of social care. This followed an alliance of 78 care organisations branding social care ‘underfunded’ and ‘in crisis’ in a letter to the Prime Minister last month.

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