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CARE HOME DIVE

One in eight care homes has closed – despite record numbers of older Brits

ONE in eight care homes has closed in the past decade – despite record numbers of older Brits.

A damning report reveals the scale of the crisis facing the sector, with 1,612 homes shutting their doors since 2009.

 One in eight care homes has closed – despite record numbers of older Brits
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One in eight care homes has closed – despite record numbers of older BritsCredit: Getty - Contributor

It comes as growing numbers of families are being forced to pay for their loved-ones care.

Boris Johnson gave voters a “cast-iron guarantee” he will have a long-term plan for social care in place within five years.

But campaigners warn 1.4 million older Brits are failing to get the support they desperately need.

A report on the care market by market analysts LaingBuisson shows there were 12,592 homes for OAPs in 2009.

But by this year, the number had fallen to 10,980.

CASH-STRAPPED COUNCILS

Social care provision in England is means-tested, with people with more than £23,500 in savings or assets having to contribute.

Cash-strapped councils are forcing growing numbers to pay out for care which used to be provided free by the state.

Nearly half of all care home residents are now self-funding – with 45 per cent of Brits paying for their loved-ones to be looked after.

It is up from 40 per cent in 2009, according to the report.

Self-funders are also subsidising other residents, with those paying privately forking out £846 a week in 2016 – or £44,000 a year.

It is £236 a week more than that charged for council-funded beds.

The research shows that “self-funding” for care home places has now risen to £7.6bn a year.

Caroline Abrahams, Charity Director at Age UK, said: “There are more older people than ever before but fewer care and nursing home beds compared to a decade ago, and that spells big trouble for anyone who needs this kind of help today, as many do.

“It’s high time the Government got a grip on the situation so whoever our next PM is must make this a day one priority, or else hundreds of thousands of older people & their families are going to be very badly let down.”

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