Social Care Inquiry


About the Inquiry


Following closures of residential care facilities and general funding issues with independent, voluntary and council run facilities, the Health and Sport Committee has agreed to undertake an inquiry into social care for adults over 18 years. 

We want to explore the future delivery of social care in Scotland and what is required to meet future needs. 

We held an event, Scotland 2030: A Sustainable Future for Social Care for Older People, on 16 November 2018, in collaboration with Scotland’s Futures Forum, to consider the future of social care for older people in Scotland. The event considered the general proposition of how social care would look (and be financed) in 2030.

The Scottish Government Adult Social Care Reform Programme is currently working to reform social care in Scotland. This inquiry will not focus on replicating that work, it will instead explore the future delivery of social care in Scotland and what is required to meet future needs.  The Scottish Government has been working with Convention of Scottish Local Authorities (COSLA), people with lived experience, unpaid carers and other stakeholders to develop a national programme to support reform of adult social care.

The national programme, launched in June 2019, is intended to:

• Support integration authorities, the wider sector, and communities in planning and taking forward changes.
• Advise Scottish Ministers if national changes or interventions are required.
• Raise awareness of the role of social care support in Scotland and its social and economic value.

More information is available on the Scottish Government website - Reforming adult social care support.


We will be undertaking targeted engagement looking at home care between August and October 2020 to add to our existing evidence based on social care. We will be discussing all the evidence we have collected this year in Committee sessions during October and November 2020.


Our initial inquiry into social care was to be a forward-looking strategic approach designed to encourage an exploration of how social care can be co-ordinated, commissioned and funded differently in the future. You can view the written submissions we received here.

However due to the COVID-19 pandemic, scrutiny of social care was paused. The pandemic has brought several issues to the fore in relation to care homes and wider social care. On 4 June 2020, the Committee took evidence from the Cabinet Secretary for Health and Sport on the issue of COVID-19 in care homes.

Summaries of evidence from the initial social care inquiry, and the session exploring the impact of COVID-19 on care homes, are now available:

We will now begin scrutiny on a new social care inquiry. This inquiry will:

  • examine the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on the social care sector;
  • examine wider issues impacting social care delivery that have come to light because of COVID-19; and
  • explore how those lessons can be applied in the future to improve social care systems and delivery in Scotland.

It is intended that the inquiry going forward will draw on evidence already received and hearing from individuals on what changes are required to happen in social care. It is intended this contribute to the Scottish Government’s proposed review of adult social care.

Call for views

We are looking for views from people who provide, or receive, care and support at home. We want to hear from:

  • individuals receiving care at home
  • family members and unpaid carers
  • staff, managers or owners of a care at home services, or personal assistants providing care

We have created a short survey to understand the impact of Covid-19 on care at home services, and what issues the pandemic has highlighted, improved or made worse. Through the survey, there will also be opportunities to engage further with this inquiry.

The experiences you share will be added to evidence and insights we have already gathered about social care, and the effect of the pandemic on care homes. They will be used to support our formal sessions in October and November 2020.

Please note, we are not able to take up individual issues raised in this inquiry, but if you would like support or advice you can contact your Constituency, or Regional MSPs.

How to submit your views

 Please submit your views by Monday 7 September 2020.

Please use this link to submit your views through Citizen Space.

The call for views is also available in an easy read version.        

The Scottish Parliament and its committees value diversity and seek to work towards committee witnesses being broadly representative of Scotland’s society. As such we encourage members of underrepresented groups to submit written evidence If you need advice, please contact the clerks on the email address:

Before making a submission, please read our privacy notice about submitting your views to a committee. This tells you about how we process your personal data.  If you are under 12 years of age, please read this privacy notice.

We welcome written views in English, Gaelic, Scots or any other language.


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