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What was in the Autumn Budget for people with MS?

The Chancellor Phillip Hammond has delivered his Budget for 2018, saying ‘austerity is coming to an end’.

While he's announced money for some important services that affect our community, we don't think it goes far enough.

Money for social care, but it’s not enough

Like last year, the Chancellor has pledged some of the money needed to keep our social care system going. But, there's a £2.5 billion gap in social care funding to fill by 2020.

Today's budget gave £650 million to local authorities to spend on social care in 2019-20. This money will help, but isn’t enough to keep the system afloat, or to improve the care system for the future.

Where else is money going?

  • From the extra £20 billion for the NHS, announced earlier this year, some of this will go to new mental health services to help people when they reach crisis point.
  • For Universal Credit, £1 billion will be given to help fund the move from older types of benefits.
  • The Work Allowance, which is the amount you can earn before Universal Credit is removed, will be increased by £1,000 from April 2019.

£20 billion for the NHS is not enough

Our Director of External Affairs Genevieve Edwards says:

“Today’s budget offers people with MS some hope that austerity might truly be coming to an end. But while the £1 billion for Universal Credit and £650 million for social care will go some way to improving their lives, it will take a lot more to reverse the impact of years of deep and damaging cuts. Over 100,000 people in the UK have MS, and successive UK Government spending decisions to date have left many of them without support to live independently.

“Although £20 billion for the NHS is significant, this funding will be undermined as people continue to turn to the health service as a last resort, when they don’t get support they need elsewhere. Both social care and disability benefits desperately need substantial and sustainable investment, and this must come in next year’s spending review.”