Inaugural Royal London lecture - Where now for social care funding?
On Thursday 12 October we hosted the first inaugural Royal London lecture ‘Where now for social care funding?’, delivered by Sir Andrew Dilnot and chaired by Alison Holt, BBC social correspondent.
Earlier this year the social care debate was renewed, taking centre stage at the UK general election. It caused controversial manifesto U-turns and uproar across the country, yet many questions have still remained unanswered.
Despite growing need from an ageing population, the number of people receiving residential care has barely increased since the turn of the century and consumers often have very little choice of suitable care homes with vacancies in their local authority.
Sir Andrew, author of the report which led to the 2014 Care Act, alongside an industry leading panel (Yvonne Braun, Director of Policy and Long Term Saving at the ABI, William Laing of industry experts Laing Buisson and our very own Jennifer Gilchrist, Proposition Lead at Royal London) explored the future of social care in the UK and offered potential resolutions to this complex crisis.
Sir Andrew Dilnot said:
‘Many of us will not need to spend large amounts on care in later life, but for those who do, the costs can be huge. We need to find a way to pool this risk rather than let it be a later life care cost lottery. A cap on care costs removes the catastrophic risk facing us all, and could help to stimulate more provision of private sector financial services. Coupled with a reform to means-tested state support, this could help tackle the ‘broken’ care market where the supply of residential and domiciliary care all too often does not meet the needs of older people’.
Steve Webb, Director of Policy at Royal London said:
‘There is a real risk that the Green Paper on social care will simply pose questions and will postpone politically difficult choices. The ‘Dilnot’ cap on lifetime care cost is an important part of the answer. It is only fair to make sure that those who are unfortunate enough to face huge long-term care costs in later life do not face an unlimited bill, and a cap would make it more viable for providers to come forward with insurance products. We also need to think creatively about whether care insurance could be integrated into other financial products such as pension drawdown accounts which would help to broaden the group of people who are pooling the risk of facing huge care costs’.
Watch the full Royal London lecture below: