Nuffield Trust: Significant tweak to social care proposals will leave fewer protected from catastrophic costs

Natasha Curry's comments ahead of a vote on an amendment to the Care Act 2014.

Press release

Published: 22/11/2021

Commenting ahead of a vote on an amendment to the Care Act 2014, Nuffield Trust Deputy Director of Policy Natasha Curry said:

“The proposed amendment to the Care Act would be a significant change to the way the cap on social care costs would work. Under these new proposals, fewer people will be protected from catastrophic costs than would have been the case under the original proposals.

“It is very disappointing that the government has not set out its assessment of the impact of these changes. Without it we cannot work out exactly how many people will be protected from needing to sell their homes to pay for care costs. Crucially, these changes as they stand offer far less protection to those with lower levels of wealth than their wealthier counterparts.

“But ultimately, these tweaks do nothing to address the burning issues of a social care system already deep in crisis. A cap may help to put a limit on some people's costs but it does not in itself inject more money into the system, improve care or extend access to care, or address the dangerous gaps in the social care workforce. It must sit alongside other reforms to this broken system. 

“The social care reform we desperately need to see must work for everyone - no matter our wealth, income, age, condition, or where we live. In the here and now, the government must act quickly to tackle severe immediate challenges ahead of the winter. We then need to see a long-term, comprehensive plan based on clear principles to deliver lasting change and build a fair, clear and sustainable care system. We still appear to be a long way from that.”


Notes to editors

  1. The Nuffield Trust is an independent health think tank. We aim to improve the quality of health care in the UK by providing evidence-based research and policy analysis and informing and generating debate.
  2. For all queries or to arrange an interview, contact Simon Keen: 07780 475571/; or Meesha Patel: 07920 043676 /