Voice of the People: Care homes on brink of collapse – Government must step in

Voice of the People www.mirror.co.uk

The care home system on which thousands of our ­elderly loved ones depend is on the brink of collapse.

A decade of cuts, the Covid crisis and now a massive £80million rise in insurance premiums because of the pandemic have brought the sector to its knees.

The network of homes across the country is the cornerstone of how we look after our elderly, frail and vulnerable – of how we give them the dignity that they deserve in their later, sometimes difficult, years.

It is broken. A first priority for the Government must be to indemnify care homes against being sued and restore insurers’ confidence to bring down premiums.

Boris Johnson and his ministers know only too well the plight of this vital part of the national fabric.

But in spite of explicit promises to “fix” the system, they have produced nothing – no plans, no alternative.

The Prime Minister is once again failing the nation.

Three years ago the ­­Government – of which he was part – pledged to bring forward a Green Paper with plans for funding an already creaking system. We are still waiting.

In his very first words as Prime Minister, Johnson promised on the steps of Downing Street to “fix the crisis in social care once and for all”.

He said he would “take personal responsibility for the change I want to see”. We are still waiting.

The virus exposed a service unfit for purpose. The only way forward is a national care service integrated into the NHS.

It will cost. But you cannot put a price on the dignity of life.