New care home cap is “as credible as a Findus Lasagne” slams NPC

Published: 15/02/2013

The new proposed care home cap has been severely criticised by the National Pensioners Convention (NPC) who have pertinently described it as “about as credible as Findus Lasagne”.

Health Minister, Jeremy Hunt, recently announced the new £75,000 cap will be put in place by 2017. However standing at over double the original recommendation of £35,000 by the independent Dilnot Commission, the figure has not gone down well.

Dot Gibson, General Secretary at the NPC, does not think the plans address the real issues:

“The social care system needs urgent and radical reform, but these proposals simply tinker at the edges.

“The current system is dogged by means-testing, a postcode lottery of charges, a rationing of services and poor standards and nothing in the plan looks like it will address any of these concerns.

“Setting up a lifetime cap on care costs of £75,000 will help just 10 per cent of those needing care, whilst the majority will be left to struggle on with a third rate service. Using inheritance tax or money saved from the state pension system simply won’t raise enough money to bring about the change that’s needed.”

Speaking about the cap, Jeremy Hunt expressed the government’s aim of becoming one of the first countries in the world where people are not forced into sell their own homes to pay care home fees.

He also confirmed plans to increase the care home threshold limit. Currently anyone with assets in excess of £23,250 is required to fully fund their own care. Under the new plans, also set to be implemented by 2017, this figure will rise to £123,000.

Mr Hunt comments:

“The point of what we are doing is to protect people’s inheritance. The worst thing that can happen is at the most vulnerable moment in your life you lose the thing you worked hard for, that you saved for, your own house.”

Goldsmith Williams is currently helping hundreds of families who wrongly paid care home fees between 1 April 2004 and 31 March 2011, many of whom sacrificing their homes in order to raise the capital.

While the deadline for these claims has now passed, we are still able to help families reclaim costs for care paid between 1 April 2011 and 31 March 2012. Meanwhile our extended care home fees service can help assess whether a patient is eligible for NHS continuing care and have their care funded by the Primary Care Trust.

Content correct at time of publication

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