UK & World News
Elderly Care Cap Is Put On Hold By Coalition
The biggest reform of the social care system in more than 60 years has been published by the Government but does not include a cap on payments.
Health Secretary Andrew Lansley made clear he could not commit to where a cap should be set until the next spending review, although he agreed "in principle" that one should exist.
Analysis by the Department of Health showed the Government has looked at a number of different options - including setting the limit at £75,000 or £100,000.
This is far higher than the recommendation by economist Andrew Dilnot last year, who suggested a cap between £25,000 and £50,000 to stop pensioners being forced to sell their homes to fund residential care in their old age.
Mr Lansley, as he published the draft Care and Support Bill, insisted the Government is looking at the "whole range" of options but said funding the changes had to be agreed at the next Treasury spending round in 2013.
"Our plans will bring the most comprehensive overhaul of social care since 1948 and will mean that people get the care and support that they need to be safe and to live well so they don't reach a crisis point," Mr Lansley told MPs.
"We agree that the principle of the Dilnot recommendations - financial protection through capped costs and an extended means test - would be the right basis for any new funding model.
"However, while this is the right thing to do and it is our intention to base a new funding model on the principles, if a way to pay for it can be found, any proposal which includes extra public spending needs to be considered alongside other spending priorities, which of course include the demographic pressure on the social care service itself.
"The right place to do this is at the next spending review. We are taking definitive steps now to take forward a number of important recommendations made by the Dilnot Commission."
Labour accused the Government of refusing to face up to the problem of supporting an ageing population by not addressing exactly how care could be paid for.
Shadow health secretary Andy Burnham said: "With no answers on the money, this White Paper fails the credibility test; it is half a plan."
The move to delay fixing a cap came as plans to give pensioners state loans to fund their care, with the money repaid on their death, were unveiled.
People who cannot afford their own care will be able to borrow the money from local councils under a nominal interest rate. It would be paid back after their death through the sale of their house.
The scheme, due to be introduced across England from April 2015, is intended to help around 40,000 people a year who are forced to sell their homes to pay for care.
Mr Lansley said: "No one will be forced to sell their home in their lifetime to pay for care."
But campaigners said the loan did nothing to address the funding problems.
Ros Altmann, head of the over-50s group Saga, said: "Empty words will not deliver care. Funding is the crucial missing piece of the care puzzle and the longer the system is left as it is the more families will suffer. It's not acceptable to use the fiscal deficit as an excuse."
Pauline Turner was forced by her local council to sell her mother's bungalow to pay for care bills that have climbed to £96,000 in less than five years. To make matters worse, her £50 a week pension credit was stopped because her savings increased after the sale.
She said: "The Government are saying to us: 'Be thrifty, look after yourself, work hard and you will get rewarded'. Why should I be thrifty or why should my mother have been thrifty because she has lost everything she ever worked for. So why do we bother? The government is sending out confusing messages here."
The Care and Support White Paper and draft Bill also set out plans to end huge variations in the care people can expect around the country.
There will be minimum standards, training for more care workers and a move to rule out the practice of 'contacting by the minute', in which people are allocated short periods of help at home with washing and dressing.
what do you think?
Noooooo...the government will "loan" the care home costs to the elderly. The they will grab their home after they die! Exactly the same thing....just takes a little longer for the to get your house.
if we work hard and save through our lives surley the saveing are for our care in old age the only people who are complaing are worried they will not get the house . the getout is to look after them yourselves// or does it interfere with your lifestyle?? its not your money ????
How would you like all the homeless in Britain to suddenly live in the Houses of Parliament tomorrow morning and be handed a £2,000 bottle of wine?
How very true Joan!
I think we are going to hell in a handcart. We have become a world of greed and selfishness. The bottom line is sod the aged sod the workers all must be done to protect the wealthy and the shareholder. For though most of us are having to tighten our belts they do no think austerity has anything to do with them. It would seem if they have any spare cash they would rather stick it up thier nose or in their arm (See lead story) |because they are "Troubled" If we behave likewise its because we are pond life.
Its simple. You should be looking after your parents yourself. They raised you up and the least you could do is to look after them when they need you the most. In our Asian culture we keep our elders with us and dare not send them to a nursing home. They made sacrifices for us and in term we should do the same.
Well said - Prince Shaz. That's exactly what I have said many times before. Just how many Asians do you see in Old folks homes? - Answer is very little indeed. The western culture should take a step back and look after their own elderly instead of shipping them out to grass.
I don't know what my ancestors bothered fighting for. I do know future generations won't bother.
So the taxpayer is expected to stump up for the care just so the relatives can inherit?
Read it again.
What is £100k these days, if you have cleared your mortgage you are probably on half or more than that of 'wealth'- certainly if you have been paying towards a pension. I think the government should be looking at another measure than a straight forward cap, something to do with who benefits, much like the need for a re-evaluation of the traps in the council tax bills that are disproportionate to elder people's income.
I'll tell you who benefits Mike.... Bankers, Government officals and countries across the sea.... they all seem to be far more important than the elderly in this country
Are country is finished the less you do the more you are rewarded just rent seems the worst thing you can do these days is own a house
Yes you are so right. I came from the slums and worked hard to buy my own house.For fifty years I only had 6 months offwork. Why cant I be looked after if I need a care home without losing my home? Why should my children pay for the care and lose the inheritance i so desperatley fought for. I have already made up my mind to commit suicide if a care home is imminent.
The easy way out Carol? I would expect a comment like that from a 6 year old, not a grown woman.
i agree joan not is carols comment about suicide childish it is also very selfish. how does she think her children would feel knowing their mom had took her own life in order that they should gain financially . me thinks she puts monetary gain before love
There are several ways to make sure your money cannot be touched. No matter how much you have in the bank, no matter how much you have in savings, and no matter how big your house is - There are legal ways to make sure no one can touch it and you can get all your elderly care for free. Its just a matter of knowing how to do it. - and NO I won't tell you.
Spend it. That's what i do.
I expect it's something you have already done, it's people like you or those you write about that put a burden on honest folk by not paying your fair share of dues and demands.
yeah peter you look after yourself mate. i expect with statements like that you also believe its ok to use whatever loopholes you can to avoid paying your fair share. so please refrain from calling people claiming benifits as you so often do because obviously they dont recieve any of your megre taxes
George and Michael, I certainly do pay my fair share of taxes - in fact I will confidently bet either of you that I have paid more in taxes than either of you over the past few years. I am also an employer, and with Corporation tax and national Insurance Contributions, and shortly NEST pensions, my Company pays thousands of pounds each year to keep the benefit system going. I also play my part in employing people so that they can earn a living. I have 8 employees (don't want any more) and also use more than 20 sub-contractors a day, keeping them in regular work. Michael - I only call people that claim benefits if they are the sponging, idle loafers that WON'T work. Not the genuine claimants that can't work..
ok peter i think that after reading many comments left by yourself over the months we are all aware that you have your own business, that you employ people, and you pay thousands in taxes etc. however on what do you base your opinion that you pay more than george or myself.you know absolutely nothing about us. to me you come across as a braggart with a very inflated opinion of yourself
Michael, I have done well for myself and I help many other to do the same, and its no thanks to anyone else. I was made redundant, because I had made the job I was doing extremely profitable for me, and the boss's son wanted my job. The unions would not help as they said they would have found any reason to give him my job no matter what, and backed off. What did I do, I got off my backside and instead of claiming benefits, I became self employed. That Michael, was 15 years ago, and if I can do it, then so can some of the others claiming dole. As far as you claiming I only pay meagre taxes, I still bet I pay many times what you pay, and if so you are in no position to condemn me.
there you go again proving what i said in my last post we are aware of how magnificent you are. and of your great benevolence to your fellow man. how you single handidly dragged yourself up by your boot strings .formed your own company ( yawn yawn ) we bow down to your greatness. you dont need to prove anything to anyone so why does it feel that that is exactly what you try to do. read the last few lines in your previous post and you will see why i called you a braggart
I think if people are able to care for their elderly parents, it is a good thing. However, there are a lot of cases where this simply cannot be done due to a lot of other commitments - and, anyhow, who exactly does the majority of the caring? Women. It is women who already save the 'taxpayer' billions in childcare and care of the elderly and disabled. Besides that, millions of people DO care for elderly parents AND struggle to hold down jobs and are simply worn out. I speak from personal experience with my parents and in-laws. Only my in-laws ended up in full-time care, paying £330 per week EACH, from their life savings. He fought in the war in the RAF, while she was a nurse. This new deal is shoddy. Once again the government is making the less well off pay while their rich friends continue to coin it in. How comforting is it to the elderly to know their bill is deferred and they are passing huge debt onto their children?
Don't get the thumbs down, I agree with you!
For god's sake people! All it is, is another choice in what you can do to cover the costs. Nobody is forcing anyone to do this. And the loan could also be paid back by other means if possible later on. It really has to be better to have another option on the table than none at all surely.
Choice? Either sell your home or leave a huge debt for your kids. After all the taxes after all the taxes older people have paid all their lives, care homes should be paid for already and be given more investment, not to mention taken out of the greedy hands of profit-driven companies such as Southern Cross.
Chris, obviously in an ideal world we would all be looked after in our old age by the taxes we have paid during our working lives. Unfortunately, there simply isn't enough money to go around because some people refuse to pay their way. My advice, don't rely on anybody but yourself to look after you.
Jeem, don't fall for the lies of politicians. This country is swimming in wealth. It is just concentrated in too few hands. A lot of re-distribution of wealth would not go amiss.
The governments of the Earth do not understand what people are putting up with every day. They live in a different World of £2,000 per bottle of wine. All the comments on this page clearly foretell what is eventually doomed to happen to every greedy government on Earth. When the people are treated like garbage, they eventually rebel. People don't work their entire lives like slaves, then be told, they can be helped when they have £20,000 of savings left. The way the people of the Earth are being treated will lead to global rioting such as has never, ever been seen. The reason for that is, there are far more people and far more poor people than have ever lived on Earth before. You can only treat people badly for so long and the comment section pretty much speaks for itself.
Once again our Government is in a dilemma about paying for social care for the elderly. I expect eventually the issue will be put on the back burner and be forgotten about. However, what annoys me is the fact that they don't think twice about offering billions of pounds to Afghanistan and other undeserving countries. Furthermore when will the political parties ever realise that there are too many immigrants in the UK putting a drain on our services and diluting the number of benefits available for the indigenous population. Whilst I accept the really deserving starving people of the world should receive aid I think the others should not. Anyway, there are too many swanning around in the UK living like Royalty compared to those living in their own country, and this is being realistic not racial.
Well said. I agree entirely.
Very good points!
It's not immigrants or old people 'draining our services' or 'diluting the number of benefits available' - it's the rich and super-rich who are doing that. Gambling our money on the stock exchange, breaking the banks, keeping our money in their vaults, dodging billions in taxes, swimming in obscene bonuses, add all that up and the 'deficit' would be wiped out and we'd be able to provide decent jobs and homes for all. Repeat this across the globe and most people would be happy to stay in their own countries. It's the capitalist system we can no longer afford. The rich 1% coining it in while the poor 99% being expected to pay for it.
So who pays for those people who have no house to sell and rent their home?
What are you suggesting?
Won't be long before we are all put down when we reach 75 plus cos we cost too much to keep!
d and d Phillips
Are the caps One size fits all and do they have ear covers?
A £30,000 cap would cost approx £2 billion. Are our OAP's not worth that? Of course not! Lets keep on subsidising the scroungers, immigrants and overseas corrupt countries which will only cost us 100's of billions instead.
the reality is everyone deserves to be cared for in their old age. already the anti welfare are voicing their opinions on people who for whatever reasons havent bought their own house during their life times. they are of the opinion these people shouldnt be eligible for care. i wish they would think twice before opening their mouths. what do they propose society should do with these people. if governments are that worried about the situation they should think twice before doling out millions if not billions of pounds in overseas aid. stop spending millions on wars we cant possibly win. in short spend our taxes on our people. put our welfare before people in other countries. after all how much aid do we recieve from other countries . time to look after no 1
Agree with every point, Michael!
Charity begins at home! Government just needs to get their priorities right!
I am going to commit suicide if a care home is imminent. Why should my children lose their inheritance? I came from the slums and worked for fifty years with only 6 months off. My husband worked for 60 years until he died without ever going to the doctors for FIFTY FIVE years. Yes it is not worth being a regular tax payer and trying to make a good life for yourself and your family. Sponge on the state you will get better off.
perhaps if your husband had gone to the doctors a little more often he may well still be here. dont think paying taxes has anything to do with dieing.
Bit harsh, Michael, they both workers hard all their lives, I think you are missing carols point....
That is very nasty Michael. You havent understood Carol fully
My children do not expect an inheritance, When I die, they can do what they want with the house if I was living in it at the time of my death. If the house has to be sold to pay for my care. so be it. I won't be living in it so why should it stand empty if the money it would raise (not very much) would pay for my care. My children would not then have to fund my care out of their pockets. My children are all in agreement with this. Children should NOT live in hopes of an inheritance.
hi julie and louisa bit i totally understand carols point. was she not being harsh on people recieving benifits, it aint their fault the government are forcing her to pay for her care in old age if needed .i find it distasteful that her and others are directing their anger at the wrong people. its this government they should be angry with