Taking over the reins of reform
By Caring Times editor Geoff Hodgson
Time, I think, to stir the pot and dip-in a broad brush. Despite the overwhelming advantages, democracy does have its drawbacks, not least being a tendency to evolve a two-party adversarial system, hampered by an electoral cycle of around five years. National emergencies aside, this leads to short-termism and an unwillingness on the part of government to take any initiative which is not politically palatable.
By definition government means regulation and we are all accustomed to being told what we can and can’t do. A huge public service has been created to regulate everything from the wiring in your house to the height above floor level of a windowsill in a care home. Employment, corporate finance, everything is regulated, often with good reason.
Politicians are supposed to regulate the regulators and this is where problems often occur – it can be difficult to tell the NHS what to do, or which direction to take.
For all these reasons, it’s a fair bet that nothing very radical is going to happen on the social care front any time soon. There is a lack of intelligent direction but this means that, while remaining within the constraints of regulation, private enterprise is free to set the agenda. Lobbying politicians will only take us so far along the road to reform. New models of social care provision need to be developed and road-tested. Those providers who run the risks will reap the rewards.
- The CT Blog is written in a personal capacity – comments and opinions expressed are not necessarily endorsed or supported by Caring Times.