Directors call for national method of setting fee levels for care homes

Association of Directors of Social Services has acknowledged that a
national method to determine fair fee levels is required.

and representatives of the independent residential, nursing and
home care sector last week agreed to work together to explore a new
partnership to look at funding.

Wales, 22 homes in Swansea and 15 in Newport have given 90 days’
notice to the councils, after which they will not contract with
social services at the current rate. The nursing homes are seeking
£450 per week from May compared with the £357 per week
they currently receive for social services-funded patients.

Registered Nursing Home Association said Newport and Swansea
Councils’ response – to stop referrals to the homes – had already
resulted in the cancellation of transfers from hospitals and could
add to problems of delayed discharge.

homes told the councils they risked closure because their costs
exceeded the amount they were paid. They said it was no longer
possible to provide high quality care to social services-funded
patients at “bargain basement prices”.

Newport Council said it recognised the long-term funding problems
experienced by the residential and nursing home sector, it was in
“no financial position to meet the level of fee increases

of social services Ellis Williams added that the “spirit of
willingness” to work together had not been helped by the
termination of contracts by the homes.

Meanwhile, Hampshire Care Association has rejected fee proposals
put forward by Hampshire and Portsmouth Councils and has written to
care home owners advising them to set their own prices for all new
clients on the basis of their costs.

reserved outcome of a court case in the Isle of Wight brought by
residential home owner Richard Jones against the council over the
amount paid for its residents could also have wide-reaching
implications for home owners across the country.

After a
week of negotiations in Scotland, the executive of the umbrella
organisation representing most private care home owners, Scottish
Care, agreed to recommend a two-year package to its members (News,
page 8, 28 February). Care home owners will be asked to accept an
increase of £27 per resident per week from 1 April this year
until 31 March 2004.

increase falls far below the £50 per resident per week sought
by Scottish Care, but is likely to be accepted by members and, if
so, would remove the threat of an all out ban on new council-funded

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