Cornwall residents are now waiting less time to get the care and support they need.

In April 2022 there were nearly 2,000 people waiting for a care assessment. To date this figure now stands at 862. This is a reduction of 57 per cent and is in line with performances by other local authorities across the country. 

Also people in Cornwall waiting for a social care bed on coming out of hospital is now below the England average.

Ali Bulman, Cornwall Council’s strategic director for adult social care said: “By doing this we’ve helped people to come home after a stay in a care home, having been placed there on a temporary basis to regain their skills after a stay in hospital, to those who simply waited too long a time to have their care and support needs assessed. 

“One thing I’m very proud of is how staff have shifted their focus on placing people in care homes when really, they’d be happier and better off staying in their own homes. Of course, care home settings can absolutely be the right thing for people but for most, staying in your own home with care and support is the preferable option.” 

To further add capacity to the care at home market, there has a been a project looking into the distance care workers move across their working area to see where efficiencies could be made. This has fed into plans for how care providers are commissioned in the future.  

Commissioners have also been supporting and developing strategic partnerships that have helped to overcome provider failure that could have seen hundreds of people losing their care home placement or the support they receive at home. 

“Through working with providers like Spectrum and Salutem, Cornwall Care and Sanctuary, we have successfully secured critical provision for our residents.  This includes securing funding to build seven new care homes and refurbishing a further four,” added Ali. 

“Our plans to deliver 750 extra care units is also underway with work expected to start in Falmouth in spring 2024, subject to planning permissions.”  

Extra Care provides people with an alternative option to residential care. Self-contained homes exist under one roof that also provides communal features that people can draw on to alleviate loneliness, as well as the in-house care and support provision, when they might need it.  

Ali concluded: “All in all I am very pleased with how services are improving and developing. We can of course, always do more and I know staff will continue to strive to deliver more for the people of Cornwall and I look forward to reflecting on how much we have achieved at the same time next year.” 

Cllr Andy Virr, cabinet member for adults and public health said: “We’re very pleased with how services have improved in the last year and I’d like to say thank you to all of those involved in in achieving this. 

“At the heart of all of this is creating sustainable, vibrant communities for all of Cornwall’s residents. By supporting our most vulnerable residents we can ensure that no one is forgotten and that whatever age or ability everyone can expect a good standard of life.”