The average cost of just an hour’s care in our homes coming in at £20, a week’s live-in support ranging from £650 to more than £1,600, and a room in a nursing home averaging £840 or more, according to the NHS. That wait, the financial world warned this week, will be as financially crippling as ever, especially in the wake of a pandemic that has battered incomes across the country. Despite widespread assumptions across the generations that the state will cover these costs, the truth is that only those with less than £23,250 in savings will get help. That could include assets held in property if you need residential care, though no one will be required to leave and sell their home to cover costs if they are being cared for at home.
Held in the hand of a woman who will never have to worry about the cost of her own or relatives’ care were nine vague words that suggests the rest of us have another agonising wait for state support. Nowhere was that more evident than the minute statement on a subject that will affect the vast majority of us – social care
Recommended But the centrepiece of the centuries-old ceremony was a speech that set the tone for what we mere mortals should expect, and not expect, from a government dedicated to boosting the coffers of the armed forces in the face of undefined threat for example, but not, as we already know, the wages of NHS staff fighting a very present danger.
“But Theresa May’s tenure in office showed it is a poisoned chalice, and no doubt it is the cost of fundamental reform that has influenced the prime minister to kick the can down the road,” says Griffin. “The Dilnot Commission, for example, calculated that their proposals would cost an additional £3bn a year by 2020-21. Whatever the solution eventually is, it will be expensive and a cost the chancellor will be looking to avoid for as long as possible.” The government promised in its 2019 manifesto that it will seek cross-party consensus on proposals for long-term reform of social care, with the express aim of ensuring that nobody needs to sell their home to pay for the costs.
“Once again, social care changes have been promised by the government but fundamental reform has been kicked even further down the road.” “The current system of social care funding is widely acknowledged as being unsustainable, yet proposed solutions have been few and far between from successive governments,” says Rachael Griffin, tax and financial planning specialist for Quilter.
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