Laura Sharman 07 February 2020

Care denied to 700,000 older people, charity reveals

Care denied to 700,000 older people, charity reveals image

Around 700,000 older people have had their request for care turned down in the past year, analysis by a charity has discovered.

Age UK said 51% of all requests over the last 12 months have not resulted in people receiving formal care and support. This is the equivalent of 2,000 unsuccessful claims every day.

In a quarter of cases (23%) the council found the person did not meet the eligibility criteria for social care. The charity said these figures show how difficult it is to qualify for care within the shrunken social care system.

Caroline Abrahams, Age UK's charity director said: “The fact that 2,000 older people are being turned down for care every day demonstrates both the enormous numbers impacted by our ramshackle care system, and how serious the problems it faces have now become.

‘We don’t know what happens to these older people whose applications are rejected but inevitably some have no choice but to struggle on alone.'

Cllr Ian Hudspeth, chairman of the Local Government Association’s Community Wellbeing Board, said: 'The findings in this report highlight the human consequences of our historically underfunded adult social care system.

'People of all ages should be able to live the lives they want to lead and councils are committed to doing all they can to make this happen. There are different ways of meeting people’s needs but the serious funding and demand pressures facing adult social care, combined with councils’ legal duty to balance their budgets, inevitably means that difficult decisions have to be made.'

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