This autumn, IFoA president Jules Constantinou and policy manager Henry Thompson travelled to Liverpool and Birmingham for the annual Labour and Conservative party conferences the IFoAs first foray into party conferences in three years.
Social care funding was identified as the policy priority, and the IFoA partnered with the political monitoring outfit Dods and its Health & Care Forum - a collection of like-minded organisations with an interest in health and care policy issues, which wished to communicate with the key decision-makers in the area.
Through the Forum, the IFoA co-sponsored three events across the two conferences. At the Labour conference, we hosted a drinks reception with remarks from the Shadow Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, Jon Ashworth
MP, and Vaughan Gething AM, Cabinet Secretary for Health and Social Services in the Welsh Government. Both outlined Labour's assessment of the pressures on the health system and their solutions, should Labour be elected.
A week later, on the Sunday evening of the Conservative conference in Birmingham, we hosted a similar reception with the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, the Rt Hon Matt Hancock MP. The morning after, our third and final set-piece event saw the health secretary receive a wide-ranging grilling on his brief during an 'in-conversation' style interview, with questions from Jules on the long-awaited social care green paper.
At all three events, we were able to speak privately with the elected representatives about the state of play on social care, and highlighted the expertise and knowledge that the actuarial profession can lend to some of the current public policy challenges facing the government.