Fees top agenda at Knight Frank conference

John Strowbridge

Inadequate local authority fees topped the agenda during a panel discussion at this year’s Knight Frank 2017 Regional Care Review.

Oakdale Group CEO Andrew Long and Avery Managing Director John Strowbridge were among the panellists at the Leicester Tigers Stadium yesterday.

John said: “Two to three per cent fee increases by local authorities are not sustainable. It’s going to be pretty tough going for the next few years.”

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He said a lack of nurses in some areas was contributing to the erosion of Avery’s EBITDA.

Avery was continuously reviewing its provision of nursing as a result of a shortage in some areas, John added.

He cited the rising National Living Wage as a further pressure on providers.

In his Autumn Budget, yesterday the Chancellor announced an increase in the National Living Wage for the over 25s to £7.83 from next April.

Commenting on fees, Andrew said Oakdale had set out what it had wanted to deliver from its launch and had set its rates accordingly.

Andrew said providers across the market needed to establish a fixed fee benchmark that reflected the true cost of care.

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