Hundreds of thousands of elderly people have had their “social care” cut in the past decade.
Seven in 10 councils in England have been forced to “ration” services since Labour came to power, according to the Local Government -Association.
Most town halls now provide services – including meals-on-wheels, trips to day centres and home visits from social workers – only to pensioners with “substantial” or “critical” needs.
Lack of funding means many councils now help only those who are seriously ill or incapacitated. In some cases, pensioners have had to sell their homes to help pay for private care, or ask their families to pick up the bill.
The revelations follow last week’s admission by Ivan Lewis, the minister responsible for care services, that provision for the elderly is “one of the great challenges facing our society”. He called for “a new settlement that is fair and -sustainable”.
A spokesman for Age Concern said: “The withdrawal of social care services is having a devastating impact on the elderly. Cutting down or restricting by tightening criteria will mean people will often have to do without.”
Cutbacks ‘rationing services for elderly’