In response to the Welsh Government’s report ‘Paying for Social Care’ released today Sophie Howe, Future Generations Commissioner for Wales said:

“I welcome the approach of exploring options to tackle key future trends for Wales, such as the increase in people aged over 65 and the pressures this will lead to increase on our social care services. We already know that by 2025 we could have 50,000 people aged over 65 living with dementia in Wales.

“However, the way in which the levy is spent requires careful consideration. We want older people to lead healthy and active lives and in turn this should mean that demand on the care system would be less. I would like to see the Government investing in preventative care – building community responses, tackling loneliness and isolation and keeping people fit. This isn’t all about care services it’s about investing in communities and projects which help to do these things.

“Today, I have been at an intergenerational conference where different partners including police cadets and school children in the Gwent area are participating in an ambitious and already successful approach to social care in their local communities.

“One intergenerational project that has focused around residents living with dementia and local nursery age children resulted in a 100% decrease in prescription of drugs for agitation and 50% reduction in psychotic drugs. If such an approach we applied across Wales imagine how that will look for future generations – it could be transformational for our future social care services, our health and well-being and could result in a care system focusing as much on wellbeing as higher levels of care.”