Getting older? Worried about how you’ll be cared for in your dotage? Do you have even moderate life savings? Live in Croydon? Then you’d better move.
Last night’s Inside Out London programme examined a disturbing variation in the standards of care provision across the capital.
As ever, Croydon compares very poorly with its neighbouring boroughs.
The Local Government Association estimates that there has been a £1 billion reduction in English councils’ social care budgets since the government’s spending review in 2010, even though this area, in the country’s generally ageing population, was already underfunded.
Care for the elderly is based on levels of need. Some boroughs provide help for its elderly residents with modest levels of assessed needs.
In 2005, 13 of London’s 32 councils provided care to people with “moderate” needs. Now only four boroughs do so, including Croydon’s neighbours, Sutton.
According to the BBC, in London, 26 out of the 32 boroughs expect pensioners with savings above £23,000 to pay for all of their care.
While some boroughs spend more than £2,000 per year on care for individuals over 65, Croydon is among the lowest spending boroughs, budgeting less than £800 per person per year on our elderly.
“The council has been judged as a four-star rated local authority for adult social care, which includes services for older people,” a council spokesperson told Inside Croydon.
“We have achieved this through a range of approaches and have managed to keep our costs low and our performance high.
“Croydon residents have told us that they want to be independent and stay in their homes for as long as possible, which is why we place greater emphasis on advice and support, early intervention, day care and respite care.
“This has led to a reduction in the reliance on residential and nursing home placements, which is where many local authorities spend much of their budgets. And we continue to invest in the voluntary sector to help provide support to people with lower needs.”
If you don’t find that reassuring, then it might be time to check out those estate agents in Wallington…
- Flawed council plan puts flats too close to Fairfield Halls (insidecroydon.com)
- Care Minister admits services are under ‘enormous strain’ as he pledges extra help (independent.co.uk)
- £300m social care savings urged (bbc.co.uk)