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New calculator highlights care elgibility

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The UK currently spends over £140bn a year on public provision of health and over £20bn on social care, but many people find it very difficult to access that care or understand how much they are owed.

Research by PSOS Mori found that people using the system found it “complex and stressful”. Live-in care group start-up, Elder, has launched an elderly care calculator, which estimates eligibility for various social care funding options. It is designed to help those paying for care understand their entitlement.

The group said more people found they were entitled to help with care costs than they expected. The calculator showed 72% of users were eligible for some level of funding through their local authority.

Pete Dowds, Elder chief executive and founder, said: “This calculator is designed for better understanding and understanding gives a feeling of control, it’s empowering. Finally, families across the country can be empowered to understand not just support from local authorities, such as direct payments but also NHS funding and even their eligibility for equity release.”

The calculator takes the user directly to their local council’s direct payments application page.

The NHS also provides a guide to the type of care to which elderly people might be entitled. In general, medical care – that would otherwise be funded by the NHS – will be funded, while residential care will not. However, this masks significant complexity in working out which benefits are due. These will depend on the needs of the person involved and the other resources available to them.

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