Budgetary spend on complex packages of care continue to grow with service demand and overall price increases across Continuing Health Care, Learning Disabilities, Physical Disabilities and Mental Health services.
The expectation is that this will grow again in 2022/23, beyond available resources as inflationary cost pressures from staffing, utilities and extra regulation push up provider costs.
With budget pressures so high it is very hard for commissioning managers to determine what the annual percentage increase in complex care packages should be. It can become extremely tricky to balance the need to ensure sustainability whilst also achieving value for money within such a tight inflation envelope.
Over the coming months providers will be writing to request a 5% or 10% increase, each demand will be supported with calculations to justify the uplift. Given the compelling reasons presented by providers it is hard to work out where the line should be drawn.
Historically the organisational approach has been to set a standard inflationary uplift which can favour some providers with excessive profits and penalise others that are operating at effective prices. Most authorities have been through a cost reviewing process at some point over the last few years, however the collected data quickly goes out of date if inflationary uplifts are not assigned on a line-by-line cost basis.
Valuing Care’s approach is to assess the value of the current price and assign an appropriate percentage on a cost line basis: the method is supported by the company’s Purchaser software which stores each case’s cost breakdowns and gives commissioners the ability to update cost lines for the relevant inflation, using Valuing Care’s model costs as a guide.
Each case is stored within Purchaser so that details can be saved and uprated easily. Inflation increases can be accurate and reviewed, year on year. By assigning the correct inflation to the cases that need it most, packages remain sustainable and profit levels are capped elsewhere. So, the next time you receive a provider letter demanding an inflation increase on a care package where you do not truly understand the delivery costs contact us to see how Valuing Care’s Purchaser software can put you back in control of the increasingly challenging market.