74,000 older people died awaiting social care under Tory government

  • Age Uk

  • curated by Dawn O'Shea
  • UK Medical News
Access to the full content of this site is available only to registered healthcare professionals. Access to the full content of this site is available only to registered healthcare professionals.

In the 30 months between the last election and this, 74,000 people aged above 65 years in England have died or will die before being provided with social care services, according to an analysis of NHS Digital data performed by the charity, Age UK. The figure equates to an average of 81 people per day or three per hour during the period 8 June 2017 to 12 December 2019.

In the same time period, the charity estimates that 1.72 million requests have been or will be made by older people for care and support will not be successful. This is equivalent to 2000 fruitless claims from older people a day or 78 every hour.

Caroline Abrahams, Charity Director at Age UK, said: “Unfortunately we have effectively wasted the last 30 months waiting for the Social Care Green Paper that never was. Many older people have lost out as a result, including the 74,000 who had applied or will apply for a care service over this period, but who died or will die before a care package was put together and actually provided. No one knows how many of these older people, if any, might have lived longer had they received care in time, but at the very least their final days would probably have been more comfortable and their families and friends would have felt better supported."

In its pre-election manifesto, the charity called on whichever political party forms the next government to invest £8 billion into the current system over the next two years to prevent further decline and to publish a “bold plan” to reform social care and place it on a secure financial footing into the future.