Oxford MailCounty budget for care may be hit by new funding rules (From Oxford Mail)

Get involved: send your photos, videos, news & views by texting OXFORD NEWS to 80360 or email us

County budget for care may be hit by new funding rules

Oxford Mail: Edith Murray, who has a council-funded place in a Bicester care home. Edith Murray, who has a council-funded place in a Bicester care home.

NEW rules over who pays for care in later life could see a regional care budget spread thinly, it has been warned.

The Care Act 2014 – which became law this week – means that from 2016, people who fund their own elderly social care will have the cost capped at £72,000 in their lifetime.

But anyone whose care costs exceed this amount will have their care paid for by the local authority – which in Oxfordshire is the county council.

The leader of the county council has expressed concern about the impact new legislation could have on his authority’s budget.

But Sheila Medlin, whose 100-year-old mother Edith Murray has a council-funded place in Langford View care home in Bicester, welcomed the legislation.

She said: “We couldn’t have afforded paying for a care home ourselves without selling our home.

“I don’t think any of us want to go into a care home but my husband is disabled and something is going to happen in the not too distant future regarding his needs.”

The cap will only apply to those who fund their own care entirely, and only to the cost of care, not the cost of accommodation.

Anyone who has capital assets exceeding £23,250 or who does not want to disclose their financial circumstances will normally be expected to pay for the full cost of their care.

Ian Hudspeth, the council’s leader, said: “It is one of those situations where we may have additional pressures coming on to our budget because we have got a very elderly population in Oxfordshire.

Oxford Mail: Ian Hudspeth

Ian Hudspeth

“We are all living longer and the cap will be approached quicker. The fact that Oxfordshire has a large proportion of self-funders is going to be a challenge for us because we will have to find the funding ourselves.”

The county council’s adult social care department has already been hit by funding cuts from central government, with £7m taken out of its budget in this financial year.

Oxford East MP Andrew Smith said: “There are some positive steps forward in the Act, but there is a real danger that the cap on care costs will not benefit nearly as many people as the Government promised.

“I share the county council’s concerns that Government cuts in their allocated care budget will make it very difficult for them to meet rising need.”

The cap only applies to “self-funders”, or those who pay to go into a care home themselves rather than use a council-funded one.

In Oxfordshire, there are around 4,000 beds in the independently-run care home and nursing home sector of which just 40 per cent are occupied by council-funded residents.

George Tuthill, chairman of Oxfordshire Care Home Association and managing partner of Wardington House care home in Banbury, estimated that staying in an Oxfordshire care home for a week costs an average of £900.

He said people stay in a care home for two years on average, leading to costs of more than £90,000.

Mr Tuthill added said: “The principal of the act is very sound but we don’t know the full details of how the cap is going to be split between the care costs and the accommodation costs.

“There is a lot that is not clear.”

Council spokesman Marcus Mabberley said: “This work is under way to understand what the possible implications may be, however it’s an ongoing process, which involves a lot of detail, and will take some time.”

Our top stories:

Dad walking tall after his 70-mile trek for charity

Oxford Mail:

9:00am Thursday 31st July 2014

IT was a fitting end to an admirable feat.

Developer submits fresh plans for 127 homes in Bampton

Oxford Mail: Downton Abbey star Dan Stevens and director Ben Bolt film a scene in Bampton

9:00am Thursday 31st July 2014

A DEVELOPER previously denied permission to build 127 homes in the village where ITV period drama Downton Abbey films outdoor scenes has returned with a new planning application.

Ambulance service cuts 12-hour shifts 'to reduce staff fatigue'

Oxford Mail:

9:00am Thursday 31st July 2014

OXFORDSHIRE’S ambulance staff shifts could be shortened as part of plans to ease pressure on paramedics.

Confusing tale of two signs calls for a speedy solution

Oxford Mail:

8:30am Thursday 31st July 2014

DRIVERS should be paying attention to the roads when watching their speed limit.

Courts prove an inspiration to grandfather in his poetry

Oxford Mail:

8:00am Thursday 31st July 2014

IN his job as a court usher Mike Lacey has seen people from all walks of life.

F1 team sues ex-employees

Oxford Mail:

7:10am Thursday 31st July 2014

LEAFIELD-based Formula 1 team Caterham is counter-suing a group of former employees who banded together to take the firm to court after being laid off.

Gaza scholar blast victim walks again

Oxford Mail:

7:10am Thursday 31st July 2014

FORMER Oxford Brookes Gaza scholar Hassan Al Hallaq, who was seriously injured in Gaza last week, has began walking again in hospital.

Pair in court after city centre protest

Oxford Mail: police officer rear

7:00am Thursday 31st July 2014

Two men arrested after a protest in Oxford will appear at Oxford Magistrates’ Court on Monday, August 11.

The Ent is nigh for Tolkien tree

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Thursday 31st July 2014

IT is said to have influenced the work of JRR Tolkien and inspired creatures in Lord of the Rings.

Funeral date set for footballer

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Thursday 31st July 2014

THE funeral of former Chelsea youth player Jordan Tabor will take place at midday on Tuesday at Trinity Church in Abingdon.

It’s a ‘bootiful’ flower display for Marie Curie Cancer Care at Bicester Avenue Garden Centre

Oxford Mail:

7:00am Thursday 31st July 2014

BEAMING Matilida Hillis, from Kidlington, filled her green star-strewn wellies with flowers at Bicester Avenue Garden Centre on Tuesday.

Power station rubble will be used in redevelopment

Oxford Mail: Pictures submitted by our readers of their memories of Didcot Power Station leading up to the demolition of three of the cooling towers.

7:00am Thursday 31st July 2014

ABOUT 32,000 tonnes of rubble and dust was collected by clean-up workers following the demolition at Didcot A Power Station on Sunday.

Driverless cars may soon be coming to a road near you

Oxford Mail:

6:30am Thursday 31st July 2014

DESPITE its academic reputation, Oxford has a long history of car-making and next year this could be taken to a whole new level.

Academy sponsor hits back at charity’s claims of pupil failure

Oxford Mail:

6:00am Thursday 31st July 2014

AN academy sponsor in the city has been judged to be “failing” to improve the prospects for disadvantaged children.

Comments (2)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

9:05am Fri 16 May 14

West Oxon Webwatcher says...

Meanwhile, millions will be spent giving free meals to infants regardless of need.
Meanwhile, millions will be spent giving free meals to infants regardless of need. West Oxon Webwatcher
  • Score: 0

9:51am Fri 16 May 14

OutToPasture says...

Mr Hudspeth is still sulking over the failed CLR project in Witney and is now trying to protect his budgets in a bid to get his vanity monorail in Oxford.

This man is so self cantered it's getting quite sickening now.
God forbid that he should ever need to rely on care in his older years.

You can keep cutting care.
Mr Hudspeth is still sulking over the failed CLR project in Witney and is now trying to protect his budgets in a bid to get his vanity monorail in Oxford. This man is so self cantered it's getting quite sickening now. God forbid that he should ever need to rely on care in his older years. You can keep cutting care. OutToPasture
  • Score: 0

Comments are closed on this article.

click2find

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree