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More people having to pay for residential care

THE number of older and disabled people paying for residential care without any financial support from their local council has risen by a third in the last seven years.

And the number of people who are having to pay for all their care in a care home themselves has increased to 41% of all residents (155,000 in total) in 2009, according to figures uncovered by the Liberal Democrats.
Worries about how to pay for a care home stay remains the biggest concern for older people who contact Counsel and Care charity’s advice service, making up over 30% of all calls.

Enquirers continually express concern about having to use large amounts of their savings and capital to pay for care, and about how the cost of care home placements is getting more and more expensive.
The charity’s chief executive, Stephen Burke, said:

“These figures show how doing nothing is not an option for 2010.

“The new personal care at home bill is a step on the way towards a better care and support system.

“But the ever-increasing number of people with high needs having to pay for care in a care home shows that reform is urgently needed on a much wider scale.

“Getting the right deal on care for older people will be a crucial issue in the general election and for the next government.

“The forthcoming White Paper on the future of care due in the New Year must answer the concerns of the general public. It must be clear about what care people will get and how much they and their family would be required to contribute.

“We need to end the postcode lottery in terms of cost, accessibility and quality of care and together work towards delivering a care and support system everyone can be proud of.”

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