Long-term care in the UK – particularly in England – is in serious crisis. Not only are levels of funding and service provision failing to keep pace with demographic trends; increasingly, severe cuts are being made in levels of public funding. Professor Emerita Caroline Glendinning argued that these cuts are partially hidden through current local government funding regimes and accountability structures.
The speaker presented evidence of the impacts of current funding cuts on care markets, on older people and on family care-givers. The seminar also drew attention to the longer-term implications of current policies, in undermining any notion that access to publicly-funded long-term care might be linked to concepts of citizenship and based on rights and entitlement; rather, long-term care is likely to become increasingly variable across the UK, dependent on local political priorities and discretionary decision-making.