PUBLISHED: PUBLISHED: 00:01, Mon, Mar 20, 2017
ALAMYThe system was last night branded a âlotteryâ
Britain’s care crisis is exposed in research showing a 30-month stay could cost between 18 per cent and 56 per cent of the value of a house.
It means someone in residential care could face a bill of £50,000 to £93,000 at the very end of their life.
The system was last night branded a “lottery” as some have all their costs covered while others pay tens of thousands of pounds with no help from the state.
Experts said the bleak picture laid bare the unfairness of Britain’s creaking care system and warned growing old does not come cheap.
GETTYExperts said the bleak picture laid bare the unfairness of Britainâs creaking care system
There is simply no money set aside for social care, neither by the Government, nor individuals
Former pensions minister Baroness Altmann said: “There is simply no money set aside for social care, neither by the Government, nor individuals.
“One in four older people are likely to need care when they reach old age and families have not yet woken up to the financial consequences of this.
“The care crisis is far worse than the pensions crisis because at least there is some money invested for pensions.
“Successive Governments have kicked the can down the road without getting to grips with the issue.
GETTYThere has been a fall in the number of Britons who think it is the stateâs responsibility to pay
“This is monumental problem which will not go away and is already crippling our beloved National Health Service.”
Those in the North-east, where the average house price is just under £129,000, could face an average care home bill equating to 56 per cent of the cost of their home.
The typical weekly bill of £554 would bring the cost of a typical 30-month stay to about £72,000.
By contrast, people in London could find that 30 months in residential care equates to 18 per cent of the value of their property.
Debbie Kennedy, of Royal London which based its study on data from care researchers LaingBuisson and Office for National Statistics house price figures, said: “These figures are a shocking reminder of the huge costs which growing numbers of us will face if we need residential care later in life. The whole system is a lottery and we need to find better ways of supporting people to cope with these large, unpredictable bills.”
The analysis looked at residential rather than nursing care.
Both provide accommodation, meals, around-the-clock supervision and help with personal care needs, but there are no registered nurses on duty in residential homes.
The average stay in a nursing home tends to be significantly shorter, meaning the total is likely to be smaller.
GETTYThe typical weekly bill of Â£554 would bring the cost of a typical 30-month stay to about Â£72,000
While 10 million or one in six of the UK population is currently aged 65 or over this is set to rise to one in four by 2050.
More than three-quarters of over-45s fail to factor in bills they face in retirement and have not talked about it with their family.
This is despite a fall in the number of Britons who think it is the state’s responsibility to pay.
Some people could use their pension savings or ISAs, but millions will have nothing other than the value of their homes.Thu, February 9, 2017
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Experts said private insurance is too expensive for today’s babyboomers, many of whom are already retired, but incentives and encouragement for families to wake up to the need for money for care are long overdue.
A Government Green Paper setting out plans to address the crisis is due to be published later this year.
Campaigner Esther Rantzen, 76, said: “As we get older we need to become aware that life gets more expensive. Most of us are in denial and don’t think they will become frail but the truth is we have to plan ahead and recognise that if we need care it going to cost money.”
Caroline Abrahams, of Age UK, said: “This all goes to show how important it is that the Government takes responsibility for developing a care system that works for older people wherever they happen to live, one that avoids an unfair postcode lottery between different parts of the country.”