Scotland defiant on free personal care

Campaign groups have backed free personal care for older people in
Scotland, despite new figures that show the cost of funding could
nearly double by 2020.

Community care minister Stephen Ladyman predicted the Scottish
executive would be forced to renege on the policy because it was
unsustainable after a study by the executive found the cost could
increase by 81 per cent to £2.5bn within 15 years.

But Jess Barrow, Age Concern Scotland’s head of policy, said costs
could be controlled if the government focused on tackling poverty,
poor housing and preventing ill-health among older people.

Irene Sweeney, secretary of Unison Scotland, said it would be
“unacceptable” for free personal care to be withdrawn.

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