Inequalities in access to adult social care are deepening due to the cost of living crisis, staff shortages and squeezed council budgets. That was the message today from the Care Quality Commission in its annual State of health care and adult social care report. The regulator said council funding for care was not keeping up with need, with requests for care per 100,000 population up 4.9% from 2017-18 to 2021-22, while the numbers receiving care as a result fell by 2.2%. It found that a quarter of providers surveyed in July 2023 had considered quitting the sector over the past year, as council funding failed to keep pace with their rising food, energy and staffing costs. Read more.