ALEX BRUMMER: has no one got the guts to solve the elderly care crisis?

Mail Online | 4/29/2019 | Alex Brummer for the Daily Mail
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Barely a day goes by when we are not reminded of the parlous state of Britain’s system of care for the elderly.

At a time when medical advances mean many are living into deep old age, the finances of local authorities charged with providing it have become ever more precarious.

Former - Tory - Minister - Damian - Green

Former Tory minister Damian Green, a long-time confidant of the Prime Minister, deserves credit for daring to raise the idea of a surcharge to National Insurance contributions to fund the system.

For the question of how to pay for our creaking social care system has become, after Brexit, the most toxic subject in British politics.

Issue - Election - Campaigns - Green - Paper

It was a major issue in two recent General Election campaigns, and a Green Paper which the Government promised would show the way forward has been delayed many times — with ministers insisting it will be published ‘at the earliest opportunity’.

At the last General Election, the Tories’ campaign was severely damaged by its cack-handed presentation of social care reform plans.

Proposal - £100 - Pensioner - Wealth - Savings

Their proposal meant that only £100,000 of a pensioner’s total wealth, including savings and property, would be protected from long-term care costs.

The plan was branded a ‘dementia tax’ by Labour and embarrassingly withdrawn.

General - Election - Campaign - Labour - £20

This followed the 2010 General Election campaign when Labour wanted a £20,000 compulsory levy to fund a national care service — they were pilloried by the Tories, who called it a ‘death tax’.

Pressure on the social care system has increased massively as result of the growing number of elderly people and the fact that many care homes have closed (at least 735 since 2016) or been taken over by private equity firms which charge bigger fees.

Consequences - People - Hospital

Among the most serious consequences is that too many people end up in hospital.

They ought to be better cared for — and more comfortable — in their own homes, with visiting carers,...
(Excerpt) Read more at: Mail Online
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