HPC consultancy - reporting to the sector
The landscape of how we look after those who need extra care and support in the UK is shifting in a way that has no precedent – the increase in the need for greater depth of care for more people is set against the backdrop of public funding that’s tightly squeezed and unable to foot the bill.
The outlook could be bleak, yet it is often the toughest of circumstances that deliver the greatest outcomes. To put it another way, when all the options are on the table, it is possible to employ new ways of thinking, to assume new perspectives and to develop workable solutions that would have otherwise been overlooked.
As it stands, the service provision of registered residential care cannot be sustained without additional public funding. Those primarily funded by the local authority (LA) are seeing gaps in the cost of their care and the current LA rates. When it comes to the care sector, it’s often the person at the centre of the funding that has the least knowledge or influence over the funding of their place. This means that the smart thinking has to be done at another level, with reforms needed to ‘bridge the gap’.
The UK care sector in numbers
The UK care home sector is worth around £16.9 billion a year in the UK. There are about 465,000 residents receiving care across 11,500 elderly care homes. With over 90% of beds provided by the independent sector (both for-profit and charitable providers), LAs primarily commission care services from independent providers, therefore procuring services for those in their care, rather than providing them.
With the average fees for a self-funded resident (2016) coming in around £846 per week, contrasting with the LA-funded places averaging £621 per week, it would seem that a £200+ per week per person differential is unsustainable, however it’s difficult to understand what part of the jigsaw is going to improve. With more people living longer and, often, in need of more specialised medical care, costs are not coming down. With the Office for National Statistics predicting a 36% growth in those aged over 85 between 2015 and 2025, time is pressing.
Is this where we come in?
Yes. The only element of the jigsaw that can shift and morph at the speed that’s required is in the strategic approach and the thinking behind the care sector. At Healthcare Property Consultants (HPC), we provide a range of advisory services to the care sector, so our reputation is only as good as our last project. We have a sound long-term view of the UK Care sector, enabling us to make smart decisions now. Our research department delivers peerless, independent data so that decision-makers can move forward with confidence. With experience and expertise across the care sector, we share our learnings from elderly personal and nursing care and housing with care, bringing added value, greater clarity and insight to our data, which is borne out through our consultancy reporting. It’s with this shared focus on the long-term horizon, as well as on the ‘right-now’, that we’re delighted to support the industry, not only through consultancy or advice, but through celebrating excellence in the sector as a sponsor of the upcoming LaingBuisson Awards.
The category that we’re sponsoring this year is the Housing with Care Award, as it recognises the growing prevalence of this type of provision and reflects our own increasing involvement with diverse clients across the care sector.