Help the Aged has warned that the delay in hospital discharge is
“only one symptom of the wider breakdown” in the current care
crisis, writes Katie Leason.
Health minister Jacqui Smith announced an allocation of £46
million from an intermediate care pot of £66 million last
week. An extra 1,300 intermediate care beds will be created, with
more to follow in the £20 million second phase.
The funding has been allocated to a variety of intermediate care
development schemes ranging from a £2 million unit at Aintree
University Hospital to a £30,000 scheme to upgrade a
residential home to provide additional intermediate care beds in
Other schemes include an extension to a voluntary sector nursing
home in Colchester, and two schemes to convert sheltered housing to
provide intermediate care facilities in Dorset and London.
But Help the Aged urged the government to take a broader view of
the care crisis.
Tessa Harding, head of policy, said: “This small amount of
intermediate care funding fails to address the needs of older
people with chronic conditions who urgently need long term quality
Smith was speaking at an ‘older people’s champions’
conference in London where she also announced the launch of an
information strategy for older people.
Information strategy for older people at www.doh.gov.uk/ipu/strategy/nsf/4.htm
Website for older people’s champions at www.doh.gov.uk/nsf/olderpeople.htm