Surge in care cap enquiries forecast
Caring Times, January 2014
New research from Partnership suggest that with the introduction of the £72,000 Care Cap in April 2016, councils will experience a surge of enquiries as people contact them for assessments in order to start their care account ticking.
Currently, just 19% of people contact their local council for information if they are choosing a care home for themselves or a relative. This decision is driven by the relative wealth of the person going into care with those in London (9%) far less likely to enquire than those in the West Midlands (30%).
Under the new system, in addition to a person’s finances their level of need will also play a part in the decision. Therefore, Partnership anticipates that not only will those currently looking for care contact their councils but also the thousands of people who are already paying for their residential (155,696) or domiciliary care (168,701)
Some councils, due to the relatively high number of older people and large proportion of self-funders, will be hit harder than others with those in the South East (36,484) and the South West (25,113) due to be under the most pressure. Chris Horlick, managing director of care at Partnership comments: “With just under one in five people typically contacting their council for information on residential care, the introduction of the Care Cap is likely to lead to a significant increase in the number of consumers looking for information.
“And, not only will local government need to deal with people who are currently seeking assessment but also those who are already in care and wish to find out if they are eligible to start their care account ticking. This will place a significant burden on councils – especially those in the South East and South West – as they struggle to manage the demands of their residents while also cutting their budgets.
“It is vital that people recognise that while the Care Cap is a step forward, they will still need to pay a significant amount towards their care and getting regulated independent financial advice could help to make this process far easier.”
Partnership is a specialist provider of financial products for people with health/lifestyle conditions. Partnership aims to offer higher retirement incomes than traditional providers by taking account of people’s health and lifestyle conditions.