AGE UK Barnsley bosses are calling on residents to get behind a campaign to help save social care in the region.

The social care system remains under extreme pressure and according to bosses it’s only getting worse.

Residents are being asked to sign a letter to the Chancellor after it was revealed millions of elderly people were unable to get the help they need.

Underfunding continues to be a big issue for the sector and, despite new funding announced last year, local authorities and care homes don’t have the resources to meet the rising demand.

Age UK analysis shows that in England, 28 per cent of people who had asked for a social care assessment had been waiting six months or more just to find out what, if any, support they can get.

This has resulted in 2.6 million people in England aged over 50 unable to get care, including hundreds of thousands who are stuck on waiting lists for support or even just waiting to have their needs assessed.

That means millions of people are left struggling to go to the toilet, eat, get dressed or wash because they can’t do these things unaided.

Age UK Barnsley CEO Debby Bunn said: “There are many, many older people in Barnsley who are struggling to cope without adequate care and support.

“Many are relying on the goodwill of family, loved ones and neighbours. But this isn’t good enough. The statistics we have gathered at Age UK illustrate the scale and depth of this ongoing problem, so it should be no surprise to Ministers that the demand for social care is going up as our ageing population grows.

“In addition, the experience of living through the pandemic has accelerated this trend.”

Mrs Bunn has therefore called on residents to sign the letter to the Chancellor before March 15 and the spring budget is finalised.

It’s hoped it will help the millions of older people in the region and around the country who need good, reliable care and support.

What matters is that government recognises this increasing demand for care from older people, and disabled people too, and does something about it,” she said.

“That is why we are sending a letter to the Chancellor to use next month’s budget to reduce waiting lists, backlogs and ensure older people can get the care and support they need.

” It is becoming ever harder to access good, reliable care in many places, and we fear the problem is getting worse.

“Government needs to invest the resources to expand the availability of social care, so every older person who requires some help actually receives it.”