Truss says cap on cost of social care will get go-ahead

Cap on cost of social care will get go-ahead so that no one will have to sell their home to pay bill, Liz Truss says

  • Liz Truss vowed that the proposed cap on the cost of social care will go ahead
  • PM said she would honour Johnson’s pledge That no one will have to sell their home to pay crippling bills
  • Everyone to receive means-tested support once their assets fall to £100,000
  • At present, people have to pay the full cost of their social care until their assets – including the value of their houses – falls below £23,250

The proposed cap on the cost of social care will go ahead, the Prime Minister vowed yesterday.

And billions of pounds will be spent on the system this winter to help ease hospital backlogs.

Liz Truss said she would honour Boris Johnson’s pledge to ensure that no one will have to sell their home to pay crippling bills.

But, speaking to reporters travelling with her in New York, she said her first priority this winter would be to boost capacity in the system in order to tackle the bed-blocking crisis in hospitals.

Boris Johnson pledged on the steps of 10 Downing Street to ‘fix’ England’s social care crisis by introducing a plan drawn up by economist Sir Andrew Dilnot

During the Tory leadership campaign, Miss Truss said she wanted to shift £13billion from the NHS to local authorities to help provide new care places for patients stuck in hospitals.

Health Secretary Therese Coffey is expected to flesh out the plans tomorrow when she unveils a new package for averting a winter crisis in the NHS.

Liz Truss said she would honour Boris Johnson’s pledge to ensure that no one will have to sell their home to pay crippling bills

But Miss Truss indicated that the boost in funding for social care could come within weeks, saying action was needed ‘this winter’. 

Asked by reporters whether she will stick to Mr Johnson’s social care plan, she said: ‘My first priority on social care is making sure we’re getting the money into social care this winter, because we currently have too many people who are having to stay in hospital due to issues in the social care system.’

Asked whether she planned to stick to her party’s 2019 manifesto pledge that no one should have to sell their home to pay for care, she said: ‘I am.’ 

A Government source clarified that this meant people would not have to sell their homes while they were alive.

At present, people have to pay the full cost of their social care until their assets – including the value of their houses – falls below £23,250. 

It means people who have saved up all their lives to own a home lose almost all of its value, while those who have never saved get their care for free.

Boris Johnson pledged on the steps of 10 Downing Street to ‘fix’ England’s social care crisis by introducing a plan drawn up by economist Sir Andrew Dilnot.

The plan would see the state step in after a person has spent more than £86,000 on their care.

Everyone will also start to receive means-tested support once their assets fall to £100,000 – four times the current level.

Caroline Abrahams, of Age UK, said: ‘It’s good that Liz Truss recognises the imperative of getting more money into social care this winter, but there needs to be enough of it and it has to reach the right places.

‘There’s a huge crisis in the social care workforce, largely because pay has been allowed to fall behind that in other comparable sectors, so our number one ask is that the Government ensures care staff get a substantial pay rise this year.

‘Local councils need more money, too, so they have a chance to reduce the waiting lists for care that mean in excess of half a million people are currently waiting even to be assessed. Last but not least, it’s surely time to move beyond a sticking-plaster approach.’

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