Time will come when you won’t be able to jump into your knickers both feet together.
Time will come when samba-dancing on one leg and fishing around doing the hokey cokey with the other leg looking for the right opening will be beyond you.
When that time comes, as it will, one of the great bear-traps of the 21st century will loom before you.
A young woman, fresh out of her social worker’s college, will arrive at your home and ponder the all important question – why can’t you put your knickers on any more?
If it turns out that you’ve had some terrible accident and your left leg is now in plaster, with a nurse calling in every day to change the dressings, then you are in luck, for you have a medical reason not to be putting your knickers on, and the giant ponzi scheme that you have been paying into all your life, 11% of your untaxed income actually, will grudgingly allow you to claim back £101 a week from your ‘insurance premiums’, in the form of a large and jolly (if you are lucky) lady, who will arrive every morning and guide your errant pins into the right hole.
Such misfortune only visits a fortunate few of us, however, far more likely is the fate that will befall most of us and a slight stroke will leave us a bit shaky on our legs, and bit ditzy in the brain area, and generally a bit forgetful regarding the sound reasons for not ‘going commando’ in the middle of winter.
We wont be in need of ‘nursing care’, we will be in need of ’social care’. The same large and jolly (if you are lucky) lady will arrive every morning and guide your errant pins into the right hole, same person, same actions, but this time you will be paying for it yourselves.
It makes no difference whether this takes places in your own home, or in a care home. It makes no difference whether you also have private health cover (go on, check your policy, it only covers you when you are receiving medical care, in or out of hospital…….not for the years afterwards). don’t even think of telling the young woman that you don’t actually want to put your knickers on, that is likely to see you under the Metnal Capacity Act, and forcibly paying for someone to (forcibly) put them on you.
The entire issue of ’social care’ boils down to why you can’t put your knickers on.
In 1999 the Royal Commission recommended that all personal care − both social care and nursing care − should be free.
Currently, nursing care is defined rather narrowly as ‘care provided, delegated, monitored or supervised by a registered nurse’. This does not include the care provided by a nursing or care assistant, even if that care is delegated or supervised by the registered nurse. In this context, it is the act of supervision or delegation that is classed as ‘nursing’, rather than the care itself.
Personal care is not defined as nursing care. At the moment, anyone with a home or savings of £23,500 or more is not given any state funding for their personal care. This means that thousands of pensioners each year have to sell their homes or use their savings to fund their long-term care.
Granny being forced to sell her house to pay for someone to force her to wear knickers is not a vote winner. So the government have come up with a bizarre scheme.
Granny will be forced to stump up £20,000 up front, in return for the government agreeing to pay for someone to force her to wear her knickers. She won’t have to sell her house. She can leave it to you.
You will inherit Granny’s house. You will also inherit the thumping Inheritance Tax Bill, and to end the “injustice” of people losing their homes when they go into care, ministers propose allowing people to defer the costs of residential care until their death ………when the bill would be taken from their estate!
Would it not be better to return to the old model of people helping their own grannies into their knickers, staying in a community nearby, taking responsibility for their own relatives? If you really are that keen on Grannies house, it is an option, you know.
What is the point of this Bill? Tinkering with a few emotive headlines? Adding another layer of bureaucracy? Appearing to do something for the elderly, whilst actually grabbing another £20,000 out of their savings ‘in case’ they need social care, and meanwhile continuing to squander the money they have paid into the NHS for the last 50 years on sex change operations for one legged Afghani asylum seekers? Deflecting ‘I was forced to sell my house’ (which I wasn’t living in anyway, because I was in a Care Home) headlines to ‘I was forced to sell Granny’s house’ headlines – in 15 years time?
It’s ‘Pants’, that’s what it is.
Update: I see LordDarzi has just resigned. He carried out the landmark review of the NHS which culminated in the report High Quality Care for All, published in June 2008. Obviously doesn’t want to be associated with the High Quality Rip-Off for all…………