Action at last on postcode lottery

POST-code lottery care for elderly people is under scrutiny today as bosses in Suffolk warn more money is needed to keep the service fair.The government announced a study into inconsistencies of care around the country after it emerged that seven 'bed-blockers' were stuck at Ipswich Hospital, ready to leave but with nowhere to go because of social services issues.

POST-code lottery care for elderly people is under scrutiny today as bosses in Suffolk warn more money is needed to keep the service fair.

The government announced a study into inconsistencies of care around the country after it emerged that seven 'bed-blockers' were stuck at Ipswich Hospital, ready to leave but with nowhere to go because of social services issues.

The news comes just days after The Evening Star reported how Masie Dickson was desperate to leave the hospital and return to her Woodbridge home but unable to because Suffolk County Council could not provide the right care package.

Today councillor Graham Newman, the county council's head of adult and community services, welcomed the launch of a review which will set clear guidelines of who gets care and when.

But he added that more money was needed to make sure that care could be provided.

He said: “The social care minister has just now, very belatedly, announced a review of how we decide who has severe enough needs to get help, and who doesn't.

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“That's all very well, but any tinkering with the complex system for deciding between one person and another will not make any major difference when there is not enough money available to help enough people who need support.

“Pressure on services for older and vulnerable people is emphatically not just a Suffolk issue. Almost every council in England that provides social care is in exactly the same position.

“More people need more complex care as we are all living longer, many often need good quality information to make informed decisions about their own lives. The government has to recognise the investment required to keep up with these twin pressures as a priority, and properly fund services.”

Are you unable to get the social care support you or your loves ones need? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich IP4 1AN or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk.

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