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Care homes: Self-funders 'pay £1bn of unfair charges and fees'

Care homes: Self-funders 'pay £1bn of unfair charges and fees'
From BBC - November 30, 2017

Care homes have been applying unfair charges and over-the-top fees for self-funders, an official review shows.

The Competition and Market Authority found some homes had applied large upfront costs and charged families for weeks after their relatives had died.

The watchdog also highlighted how those paying for themselves were charged much more than council-funded residents.

The average weekly charge for self-funders was 846 - 40% more than local authority rates.

The CMA said it meant private individuals were effectively paying a 1bn subsidy every year to keep the ailing 16bn sector afloat.

The year-long review by the markets watchdog also highlighted:

More than 400,000 people aged over 65 live in care and nursinghomes across the UK.

Four in 10 pay the full cost of the places themselves.

The rest receive some help with funding from councils - or in a minority of cases the NHS - as the system is means-tested.

Councils covering the cost of a care home place pay an average of 621 a week - more than 200 less than self-funders are charged.

The CMA said this was because councils had squeezed the rates they paid in response to a shortfall in their national funding.

Care homes facing action

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