Responding to a study in the Lancet that an extra 71,000 care home places will be needed by 2025 in England as care needs increase alongside life expectancy, Margaret Willcox, President of the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS), said:
“The fact that people are living longer is to be celebrated, however, this welcome report highlights that increased years of life are accompanied by increased years of need for social care.
“There has been a significant change in services since 1991. Older people with substantial dependencies are now more likely to live supported in the community. This report identifies both that by 2025, in England, 71,000 care home places will be needed and that there will be an additional 353,000 older people with substantial dependencies who will require care and support at home.
“If the trend of more people choosing to stay at home continues, the number requiring care at home could be significantly higher. This is further evidence that social care needs to be everyone’s concern and a national priority.
“As most people expect to need some form of care in their lifetime, there is an urgent need for the whole country to consider how best to ensure people with care needs are supported how their care is funded.
“Unless a long-term sustainable solution is established to tackle significant sector pressures, a rising number of elderly and disabled people living longer and with increasingly complex needs, along with their families and carers, will struggle to receive the personal, dignified care they depend on and deserve.
"Further, how health and housing services, alongside social care, will be resourced and organised will determine both our ability to support vulnerable people but also their quality of life.
“We look forward to contributing to debates about finding a long-term sustainable solution to adult social care funding and delivery.”