Manifesto commitment to cap care costs withdrawn

The health secretary, Jeremy Hunt, faces a growing backlash after quietly shelving a key Tory manifesto commitment to cap care costs for the elderly

  • Hunt has announced that the plan to limit care bills from next year to £72,000 for the over-65s and for younger adults with disabilities has been delayed until 2020 – despite the fact it was trumpeted by the Conservatives in the run-up to the general election.
  • people with an ageing parent in care now faced with significant extra costs. this could impact particularly on families in Cornwall given the disproportionate number of people aged 75 plus

While Hunt insisted that his department was still fully committed to the policy – which ministers had claimed would prevent old people having to sell their homes to pay care bills – according to the  Observer,most experts believe that it has, effectively, been abandoned.

The proposal was a key part of the Conservative manifesto. The sudden U-turn and the manner in which this was announced – a written statement in the House of Lords on a day when the House of Commons was not sitting, does little to enhance public trust in the government’s word.

There are also significant added costs to the taxpayer resulting from local government investment in training and IT systems – all apparently gone to waste as a result of the sudden change of plan.

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