According to a report published by the Kings Fund and the Nuffield Trust, the care and support that elderly people receive is increasingly dependent on where they live and how much money they have, rather than their specific care needs.
Ruth Thorlby, Deputy Director of Policy at the Nuffield Trust said:
“No one can predict whether they will have care needs later in life. But if they do find they need help with the basics – eating, washing, going to the toilet – most will discover that unlike a health problem where care is free, they somehow have to manage themselves.
“Our research found that local authorities have done their best to make savings while protecting funding for the poorest, but care providers are struggling on the low fees councils can afford. Shortages of home care staff and affordable care home places mean older people are often stuck in hospital, putting both their lives and vital NHS processes on hold.
“The number of older people needing care is increasing and yet we are continuing to put less money in. Unmet need is rising, providers are threatening to pull out of contracts, the wellbeing of carers is deteriorating, access to care is getting worse. A Government that wants to create ‘a country which works for everyone’ should not tolerate the oldest and most vulnerable falling into a social care system riddled with holes.”
PHC Home Care comment:
It is imperative that affordable care is made available to all those that need it. This latest report has further highlighted the seriousness of the issues facing the health service and in particular the care industry both now and in the future. Hopefully our government will have taken note and will be addressing the problem in this year’s autumn statement.
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