Most people will be aware that there is a financial crisis affecting social care for the elderly. Unfortunately the recent Autumn Statement did not bring any good news for the social care system. No extra funding was made available.
Caroline Abrahams, Charity Director, of Age UK commented: “The Government’s failure to provide any respite for our beleaguered social care system in the Autumn Statement spells deepening misery for many older people.”
How does this announcement affect social care?
The decline in funding for the system means that older people who are eligible for help are struggling to receive support. Support which would enable them to maintain their independence for as long as possible. Since 2010 there has been a 48% increase in older people who are not receiving the support for which they are eligible.
Care providers are also faced with stark commercial choices in order to remain profitable. They have the dilemma of either focusing on those who can fund their own care, reducing their levels of care or exiting the market entirely.
Winter brings the social care system into sharp relief. The cold weather can have a devastating impact on vulnerable older people. Britain has one of the worst winter death rates, even when compared to the far colder Scandinavian countries. Statistics show that up to 25,000 older people in the UK die a preventable death as a result of cold related illnesses.
What help is available?
If you are worried about the affect of cold weather upon an older person you know, Age UK provides a very useful free guide on their website.
When it comes to understanding what funding is available, an SFE (Solicitors for the Elderly) accredited solicitor is best placed to help you to navigate the social care system. You may have concerns about managing your money and property in order to ensure you receive the care you may need in the future. Or you may want to allow someone else to make decisions on your behalf. Speaking to a solicitor about any of these issues can help you plan for your future. It will also ensure you are fully prepared. Our team are SFE accredited and elderly client specialists. We can provide you with our compassionate expertise and guidance to help you see the way forward.
For more information on social care funding or planning for your future, please contact our Elderly, Care and Mental Capacity team on 0161 475 7676.