Editorial comment – staying in one’s own home

Editorial comment – staying in one’s own home

Ask 100 elderly persons if they would rather move into a retirement home, or stay in their own home and be cared for, and you don’t have to be a pollster to get the answer.  Of course, they would rather stay in their own home.

That is why this government must take the issue of future funding for the elderly to the heart of their policies.

Simply pouring cash into a system which provides options which many reject does nothing to ease the burden on the state, neither is it a so-called “solution”  when for so many elderly, it is often the unnecessary ending of independence – and the beginning of a downward emotional spiral.

There are already options which many can explore to finance the solution of live-in care, and it behoves the government to enable this process to become simpler and available to many more.

Our research shows that in London and the Home Counties, the cost of a live-in residential care home can be up to £1500 per week, an annual cost £78,000.  A skilled carer with experience of meeting the needs of the elderly can be provided at an average cost of £950 per week, an annual cost of £49,400 (accepting that this excludes the cost of one’s own household costs).  Even so, that is a difference of £28,600, compared with an approximate annual residential care cost of £78,000.

Being able to stay in your own home whilst having the security of live-in support should be a right.

This government must realise that that you cannot take the independence out of caring, and they can’t take caring out of the budget!

Diana Graham
The Graham Agency