Monthly Archives: April 2012

DH must explain how telecare saves £1.2bn

Last month, care services minister Paul Burstow said telecare and telehealth ‘could save the NHS up to £1.2bn over five years’.

25 April 2012

It would seem common sense that the ability to deploy the latest technology in the NHS would result in both the savings that the £20bn Nicholson challenge demands and the improvement in the quality of patient care that is at the heart of the coalition government’s NHS ambitions.

Earlier this year, GP magazine carried a feature about success stories in south London, one of which involved how preventing 24 unnecessary hospital admissions over a year was thought to have saved £55,000 (GP, 11 January).

But, hang on, journalists and GPs thrive on evidence like that costed out for us in south London. Exactly how had the DH calculated its £1.2bn?

The true cost of caring for your loved ones

Long-term care for ill relatives can lead to huge debts – but help is at hand, you just have to know where to look

Success: David White won back £10,000 from his local NHS Primary Care Trust

The care funding crisis continues as the Government drags its heels over a decision on how much people should have to contribute towards long-term care needs.

Meanwhile, with so many organisations involved in the process, families are being forced into debt as they get turned down for funding, or have it taken away by the ridiculous complex system and end up facing enormous bills.

David White knows only too well the financial burden the cost of caring can have upon a family.

Carers’ holiday money slashed

FURY: Ron Chambers is a carer for his wife Judy

12:10pm Wednesday 25th April 2012 in Exclusive By James Connell

A CARER has complained he can no longer afford to go on holiday to take a break from his duties because the council slashed his budget.

Ron Chambers, of St George’s Walk, Barbourne, Worcester, says he is “seething” after Worcestershire County Council cut his breaks allowance from £300 to £200.

Council chiefs say the changes mean more carers can access support – 1,175 instead of 903.

Last financial year (2011/12) carers could get a maximum of £300 a year to fund breaks, but this year (2012/13) it has been cut to £200.

Mr Chambers, aged 65, is a carer for his wife Judy, 69, who has osteoarthritis, asthma, bladder problems and has recently been registered blind and needs either a wheelchair or stick to get around.

Mr Chambers, who no longer gets a £55 per week carer’s allowance because he is a pensioner, said the money allowed him to have a break from everyday chores such as shopping, cooking, cleaning, helping his wife in and out of the shower and to dress and general housework.

He said: “I am absolutely seething. They are taking carers for granted.