Self-funding care home residents in England are charged an average of £12,500 a year more than those paid for by the local authority, analysis has found.
Figures published by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) revealed that self-funders paid an average of £44,252 in care home fees, compared with £31,270 for local authority funded residents.
“These figures start to explain why people think care fees are unfair when those footing their own bill are charged many thousands of pounds a year more than another person who could be in the same home and receiving the same care but paid for by the local authority,” said Stephen Lowe, group communications director at Just Group.
“The proportion of care home firms operating this differential pricing has also increased markedly, according to the Competition and Market Authority (CMA), with about 90% of homes now charging self-funders more than they charge councils compared to about 20% back in 2005.”
The CMA’s report found that fees paid by councils were below the costs of running care homes leading them to hike prices to self-funders to prop up their finances. The subsidy was highest in homes with a fairly even mix of places between the two groups, the report revealed.
Stephen said a lack of government progress on reforming the later life social care market was putting more financial pressure on those needing care and their families, and was delaying people’s plans for their elderly care.
Source: CMA: Care homes market study: final report – “Average fee levels and price differentials by region.”