LTCcovid Country Profile – England (UK)

Responses to the International Living Report Questions on COVID-19 and Long-Term care:

This is the section for England from a “living report” that aims to provide an overview of how Long-Term Care systems around the world have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, how they have responded and what lessons are being learnt. This report does not seek to provide detailed or comprehensive information for each country, but instead aims to summarize key reports and articles and point the reader towards those sources. It builds largely on the reports previously published in this website. It is being developed collaboratively, by answering a list of questions for as many countries as possible. 

This page shows the answers currently available for England and is automatically updated as new information is added.

This report has been initially developed by the team working on the Social Care COVID Recovery and Resilience project and questions will be added to and validated by LTCCovid contributors who are experts on Long-Term Care in their respective countries. This study is funded by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) Policy Research Programme (NIHR202333). The views expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and not necessarily those of the NIHR or the Department of Health and Social Care.

Please cite as:

Comas-Herrera A., Marczak J., Byrd W., Lorenz-Dant K., (editors) and LTCcovid contributors.  International living report on COVID-19 and Long-Term Care users and providers: context, impacts, measures and lessons learnt. LTCcovid, Care Policy and Evaluation Centre, London School of Economics and Political Science. Available at: https://ltccovid.org/country-questions/

PART 1 – Long-Term Care System characteristics and preparedness
PART 2 – Impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on people who use and provide Long Term Care
PART 3 – Long-Term Care system characteristics and preparedness that may have affected the response to the pandemic
PART 4 – Reforms to address structural weaknesses of Long-Term Care systems and to improve preparedness for future pandemics and other emergencies
  • 4.02. Reforms to the Long-term care financing system

    On 7th September 2021 the Prime Minister announced a social care reform plan to cap the costs of social care, with the aim of protecting people against catastrophic costs of care. This is to be funded through a new UK-wide 1.25 per cent Health and Social Care Levy that will be ring-fenced for health and social care, based on National Insurance contributions. This levy will be applied to all working adults, including those over state pension age. Of the £36bn that will be raised through this mechanism, only £5.4bn will be for social care (spread over 3 years).

    The new cap on social care has been set at £86,000 in care costs over the course of a person’s lifetime (estimates vary but it would take someone in residential care around 4 years to reach the cap and around 6 years for someone receiving home care). So far it seems that the cap will start from October 2023 and that costs up to that point will not be taken into account. The cap will only cover “personal care” costs: dressing, washing, eating, etc. Accommodation, food and other “hotel costs” that are included in care home fees and costs of other forms of social care support (such as activities to enable social participation) will not count towards the cap.

    An important measure included in this reform will be an increase to the means-test, changing the “floor” above which individuals are able to access any public funding for social care, which will change from £23,350 to £100,000. People with assets below £20,000 will not be asked to contribute to the costs of their care from their assets.

    In summary, people with assets over £100,000 will be “self-funders” until the amount they have spent on “eligible care costs” reaches the cap of £86,000. People with assets between £100,000 will contribute to the costs of their care from their assets and income until they have either reached the cap or have less than £20,000 left in assets and savings. People with assets below £20,000 will only be asked to make contributions from their income.

    The plan does not make much provision for improving care, other than a contribution of £500m to workforce development.

    Plans for improving provision of integrated care have been announced for a later date.

    Sources: The changes were announced here, this article by Natasha Curry in the BMJ provides an initial analysis of the changes.


Ongoing research projects on COVID-19 and Long-Term Care in the United Kingdom:

https://ltccovid.org/completed-or-ongoing-research-projects-on-covid-19-and-long-term-care/?_country=united-kingdom

LTCcovid report on England (UK):

https://ltccovid.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/11/COVID-19-Long-Term-Care-situation-in-England-19-November-3.pdf