Who will care for you? Bleak future for elderly funding revealed
search

The latest Jewish News

Read this week’s digital edition

Click Here
Dementia Action Week

Who will care for you? Bleak future for elderly funding revealed

Experts warn the community is possibly heading for a 'car crash' scenario when it comes to care for older people

Stephen is the Jewish News' Foreign Editor

Social care
Social care

The head of the National Association of Jewish Homes this week warned it’s a “foregone conclusion” several Jewish care homes in the UK will fold in the next five years, as the community heads for a “car crash” scenario.

The message from Mark Cunningham comes as the head of Britain’s second biggest Jewish care home provider said the community could initiate an insurance-style social care fund.

Writing in Jewish News this week, Nightingale Hammerson’s Helen Simmons suggests a Jewish fund for care in later life, with regular payments made in a style similar to those made into burial funds through synagogues.

Addressing the idea, Cunningham said the Jewish community was not alone in facing a social care funding crunch, but said Jewish homes “outside the M25” in places like Leeds, Liverpool and Gateshead were under particular pressure.

“The Jewish care homes that have survived with sufficient Jewish residents for last 10-20 years have struggled in last five,” he said. “Not all Jewish care homes will survive as Jewish homes in the next five years, that’s a given.”

Estelle Rowe, director of Birmingham Jewish Community Care (BJCC), which manages the 59-bed Andrew Cohen House, said UK Jews were ahead of their time in the early 19th century by creating Jewish care homes 120 years before a welfare state, but now needed similar revolutionary thinking to provide for the future. “The Jewish community has been at the forefront of welfare initiatives,” she said. “BJCC origins go back to 1828. It’s again time for us to take a lead with pioneering a new model.”

In January the Jewish Leadership Council convened a meeting of Jewish care home providers to consider reports produced by consultants at McKinsey which attendees described as painting a picture of a “car-crash scenario” for the community.  Following the meeting, there was acknowledgement that something ought to be done to protect the provision of quality, culture-specific care for British Jews, but a dearth of concrete suggestions as to what that could be. Simmons’s idea represents the first.

Simon Johnson, CEO of the JLC said: “The issue of social care funding has always been on the agenda when speaking to government, and we are aware of the challenges. This is why we convened the social care organisations to discuss funding for elderly care.”

Cunningham and Rowe welcomed Simmons’ suggestion of a Jewish community insurance-style social care fund but questioned whether there would be sufficient appetite to pay into it.

 

 

Support your Jewish community. Support your Jewish News

Thank you for helping to make Jewish News the leading source of news and opinion for the UK Jewish community. Today we're asking for your invaluable help to continue putting our community first in everything we do.

Unlike other Jewish media, we do not charge for content. That won’t change. Because we are free, we rely on advertising to cover our costs. This vital lifeline, which has dropped in recent years, has fallen further due to coronavirus.

For as little as £5 a month you can help sustain the vital work we do in celebrating and standing up for Jewish life in Britain.

Jewish News holds our community together and keeps us connected. Like a synagogue, it’s where people turn to feel part of something bigger. It also proudly shows the rest of Britain the vibrancy and rich culture of modern Jewish life.

You can make a quick and easy one-off or monthly contribution of £5, £10, £20 or any other sum you’re comfortable with.

100% of your donation will help us continue celebrating our community, in all its dynamic diversity...

Engaging

Being a community platform means so much more than producing a newspaper and website. One of our proudest roles is media partnering with our invaluable charities to amplify the outstanding work they do to help us all.

Celebrating

There’s no shortage of oys in the world but Jewish News takes every opportunity to celebrate the joys too, through projects like Night of Heroes, 40 Under 40 and other compelling countdowns that make the community kvell with pride.

Pioneering

In the first collaboration between media outlets from different faiths, Jewish News worked with British Muslim TV and Church Times to produce a list of young activists leading the way on interfaith understanding.

Campaigning

Royal Mail issued a stamp honouring Holocaust hero Sir Nicholas Winton after a Jewish News campaign attracted more than 100,000 backers. Jewish Newsalso produces special editions of the paper highlighting pressing issues including mental health and Holocaust remembrance.

Easy access

In an age when news is readily accessible, Jewish News provides high-quality content free online and offline, removing any financial barriers to connecting people.

Voice of our community to wider society

The Jewish News team regularly appears on TV, radio and on the pages of the national press to comment on stories about the Jewish community. Easy access to the paper on the streets of London also means Jewish News provides an invaluable window into the community for the country at large.

We hope you agree all this is worth preserving.

read more:
comments