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Welfare Reform on the Web (March 1999): Care of the Elderly - UK

COMING OF AGE

S. Knighton
Public Finance, June 5-11 1998, p. 20-21

In the light of the trend towards greater longevity, Age Concern has launched and co-ordinated the Millennium Debate of the Age to canvas opinion on how an ageing population will impact on our society.

DIRECTORS CAST DOUBTS OVER FUTURE OF HOMES

Caring Times, June 1998, p. 2

Reports that the Association of Directors of Social Services (ADSS) has argued in its submission to the Royal Commission on Long Term Care Funding that residential care is outmoded and likely to be replaced by sheltered housing. Developments in medicine and healthier lifestyles could also reduce demand for nursing homes.

THE EFFECT ON CARERS OF A FRAIL OLDER PERSON'S ADMISSION TO A CARE HOME

York: Joseph Rowntree Foundation, 1998
(JRF findings no. 478)

Research showed that most family caregivers had found the process of choosing a suitable care-home intimidating and would have welcomed more advice and support. Many care-givers had assumed that the costs of long term care would be met by the NHS. Rules about capital limits to savings being used to pay care costs were widely misunderstood, and savings of several participants were still being used to meet care costs even though they had been reduced well below limits. Spouse care-givers experienced particularly inequitable treatment because spouse liability to contribute towards a partner's care was interpreted differently even by individual social workers within an authority.

EXPLORING SHARED OPTIONS IN FUNDING LONG TERM CARE FOR OLDER PEOPLE

J. A. Davey
Health and Social Care in the Community, vol. 6, no. 3, May 1998, p. 151-157

Paper discusses possible sources of funding and a variety of policy approaches taken by members of the OECD, with particular reference to Britain. It concentrates on options which share costs between the users (and their families) and the state. Details are provided of schemes involving private sector insurance and equity release products.

LONG-TERM CARE: REVIEW

Better Regulation Task Force
London: Central Office of Information, 1998

Review of the regulation and inspection of long-term care for adults. Recommends that all care providers should be brought within the scope of regulation, domiciliary care should be subject to regulation, the registration and inspection of residential, nursing and domiciliary care should be unified, locally based inspection units independent of local and health authorities should carry out registration and inspection, a staff training framework should be put in place, and a new national agency should be set up to advise the government.

(For comment see Registered homes, vol. 3, no. 1, May 1998, p. 1-2)

OWNERS RIDE THE STORM OF CARE REFORMS

G. Andrews
Caring Times, June 1998, p. 29

Results of a survey of care home owners in Devon show that the 1993 community care reforms signalled a downturn in the residential sector with many businesses facing reduced profitability and financial difficulties. Changes have increased bureaucracy and paperwork. Financial difficulties have led to owners keeping residents who should have moved on, being less selective in clients admitted and changing registration categories to allow them to care for special needs residents. Most owners have not diversified their services, and many have cut costs by reducing capacity.

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