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Carers UK response to poll showing public reject current social care system

03 July 2012

New poll shows 9 in 10 of public reject current social care funding system

 One year after the Dilnot Commission’s report into the funding of long term care,  an ICM poll reveals that 89% of English adults believe that older and disabled people shouldn’t have to bear all the costs for support with everyday tasks such as eating, washing and dressing, even if they have a small amount of savings

Responding to the research, Heléna Herklots, Chief Executive of Carers UK, said: “All of us will need care or provide care to a loved one at some point in our lives and it is clear that most of us fear the costs this will bring. Families across the country are struggling with the consequences of a care system in crisis – pushed out of work and into ill-health, financial hardship and isolation by caring, and often facing huge care bills to pay for basic support. The Government must act to tackle the crisis in social care funding to deliver the support families need and protect them from what can be catastrophic care costs.”

The results represent a wholesale rejection of the current system, in which if you have more than £23,500 in savings and need support with basic tasks like eating, washing, dressing or leaving the house you have to pay the full costs of that care.

At present, every adult in England has a one in two chance of needing care costing £20,000 or more in life and a one in ten chance of needing care costing £100,000 or more. Once you move into a residential home the value of your house is included in calculating your savings.

Under the Dilnot proposals, a suggested £35,000 limit would be placed on the amount of money that an individual would have to pay towards their care.

Almost seven out of ten (68%) in the ICM poll commissioned by the Care and Support Alliance, believe that older and disabled people who need support with basic tasks don’t currently receive enough support.

The survey also revealed that nearly half of respondents (46%) know of someone in their family who has needed care and support with basic everyday tasks such as eating, washing and dressing and a further 4% had needed it themselves.  This shows that the issue of social care is one that touches all age groups and is far from being a niche concern.

The ICM poll of 1000 English adults was commissioned by the Care & Support Alliance, a coalition of more than 65 organisations representing older and disabled people.

The Care & Support Alliance is calling for the Coalition Government to publish its promised White Paper and funding progress report into long term care now – before the summer recess.  The Alliance warns any further delays are likely to hinder the progress of the draft Care and Support Bill, announced in the Queen’s Speech last month and cause even more misery to the hundreds of thousands of older and disabled people who desperately need reform to happen.

The Care & Support Alliance is urging all those who care about the future of social care to write to their MP expressing their concerns and fears about the current system.


Notes to editors

The Care & Support Alliance is a consortium of over 65 organisations that represent and support older people, disabled people and people with long-term health conditions and their families. We are working together to promote urgent reform to tackle the crisis in our care system

ACEVO, Action for Advocacy, Action on Hearing Loss, Afiya Trust, Age UK, Alzheimer’s Society, Anchor, Carers Trust, Carers UK, Centre for Policy on Ageing, CLIC Sargent, Contact a FamilyDisabilities Trust, Disability Rights UK, ECCA, EDCM, Grandparents Plus, Guide Dogs, Help the Hospices, Home Group, Housing 21, Huntington’s Disease Association, Independent Age, Jewish Care, Learning Disability Coalition, Leonard Cheshire Disability, Macmillan Cancer Care, Marie Curie Cancer Care, Mencap, MND Association, MS Society, Muscular Dystrophy Campaign, NAT, National Autistic Society, National Care Forum, National Council for Palliative Care, National Family Carers Network, National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society, National Voices, Papworth Trust, Parkinson’s UK, RADAR, Relatives and Residents Association, Resolution Foundation, Rethink Mental Illness, RNIB, Scope, Sense, Shaping Our Lives, Shared Lives Plus, Stroke Association, Sue Ryder Care, Terrence Higgins Trust, Turning Point, United Response, Vitalise, VoiceAbility, WRVS, United Kingdom Homecare Association.


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