Health and social care challenges

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Sir,

It is plain for all to see that we in Scotland and particularly in Argyll and Bute face growing problems with health and social care in fact it’s a problem that is raised by my constituents on a regular basis.

Unfortunately the SNP have been less than efficient when implementing changes to our health and social care.

A report by Audit Scotland has stated while limited progress had been made in implementing Self-directed Support (SDS), there was still much more to be done.

Keep in mind that the decade-long strategy is now in its seventh year, yet many service users were still to experience change.

The SDS initiative was launched back in 2010 and was designed, at least in theory, to allow individuals and families, rather than social workers, to make the majority of decisions in relation to their care.

It was argued at the time that this would improve a number of areas, including dignity for service users and the ability to make informed choices.

Age Scotland has also stated that people need more information relating to how they can access that personal support.

It is not clear why after the Scottish government having made this change in legislation has yet to allow so many people to have more control over the support?

The government is seven years into a 10-year strategy yet it is leaving far too many people behind and taking far to long in ensuring these options are available to everyone.

In future the government needs to do allot more to support these vulnerable people and do it quicker.

With Scotland’s demographics changing every year and the elderly population growing, particularly in Argyll and Bute, ignoring this issue is not an option.

Alastair Redman,

Islay.