Yesterday the Coalition Government announced an historic reform to the way we
pay for long-term care. This package of measures will end unlimited care costs
and provide more help for those who are less well-off.
There are two key reforms:
· A cap of £75,000 on the amount that anyone will have to pay for care
· A massive increase in the means test threshold from £23,250 to
£123,000. This means that more people with modest wealth will get help from the
state with the costs of care. Anyone with assets below this level will get help
paying for care.
The current system is a lottery. If you develop cancer,
the NHS will pay for your treatment. But if you develop dementia, and need help
with washing, dressing and going to the bathroom, you have to pay for your care.
One in ten people are hit with catastrophic costs of more than
At a time when public finances are so tight, finding the right
solution was a huge challenge. But the plan we have set out is fairer, simpler
and more sustainable than the current system.
The Liberal Democrats in Government fought hard for this historic achievement. The Labour Government failed to do anything to reform an unfair system during their 13 years in office.
Alongside other steps, such as extra protection for people who develop
care needs as a child or during their working life, these reforms will help
provide dignity and security for all of us in later life.