For care homes for older people, the median weekly costs of care in Suffolk were calculated to be:
Care in Suffolk
|Care home bed no dementia and no nursing care
||£1009.30 per week
|Care home bed with dementia and no nursing care
||£1009.30 per week
|Care home bed with nursing care
£1233.82 per week
(£1024.63 plus Funded Nursing Care £209.19)
|Care home bed with dementia and nursing care
£1271.28 per week
(£1062.09 plus Funded Nursing Care £209.19)
What has Suffolk County Council done to move towards paying the cost of care?
In October/November 2022, the Council used the interim funding from the Government for the cost of care (£2.2m) to increase prices paid for care for eligible providers; care homes for older people and home care.
The money was used to target areas of highest concern. For example, homecare and in particular the lower-level rates where sourcing care was proving increasingly difficult in some areas.
The funding was split 60:40 between homecare and residential nursing. For home care, the locality rates were increased by 8% for the lowest rate reducing to 3% for higher rates. The inflationary costs for all care beds was recognised by paying a higher percentage increase of 5% for the standard rate to give them more money per bed space and 2.5% for the Enhanced rate.
The Council, from its own resources, funded a £2m non-recurrent in-year uplift at the same time to other care services it purchases, such as day services, supported housing and extra care housing.
For the financial year of 2023/2024, the Council has proposed an overall 8.4% uplift to prices. This reflects the changes proposed for Council Tax in that financial year and the impact on the Council’s budget from that. This includes the full application of the adult social care precept of 2%.
In addition, the Council is proposing that the £3.8m is provided to allow the cost of care rises in 2022/2023 to continue permanently in 2023/2024 without impact on the inflation increase, and despite additional grant not being forthcoming from Government due to delayed social care reforms.
As part of the pricing review for the upcoming financial year, the Council will be reviewing the pricing structure for prices paid for older people’s care home placements.
This includes a proposal to remove the standard rate as very few placements have been made in 2022/2023, using this rate but retain the enhanced rate. In addition, the Council is proposing to develop a new pricing model to better reflect the costs of supporting individuals with more complex needs.
The Council will also be reviewing pricing structures for services purchased on behalf of working age adults who access supported housing opportunities for individuals with disabilities and autism.
The council will be publishing a Market Sustainability Plan by 27 March 2023, that incorporates the learning from the Cost of Care exercise and achieve a more sustainable market for all.
We will be refreshing the wider Care and Support Market Sustainability Strategy in 2023.