OLD PEOPLE’S DAY – 1st OCTOBER 2020

The Care Crisis – what questions do you want to ask?
 Dear NPC Member,

The National Pensioner’s Convention intends to hold an emergency debate on the country’s ailing care sector for national Old People’s Day on Thursday, 1st October 2020.

The details are still being finalised – we must take account of the ongoing pandemic – but we are determined to give you the opportunity to put your questions on the vital issues of the future of care to leading policy makers.  

The event will also give you the chance to ask for more information about the NPC Health and Care Working Party’s new Goodbye Cinderella report which advocates the establishment of a fully-funded National Care Service, free for all at the point of need and run in tandem with the NHS.

As you are aware the ongoing neglect, lack of investment in and increasing privatisation of the UK’s care sector was brought tragically into stark focus when Covid-19 raged through our care homes this spring, taking the lives of tens of thousands of our oldest and most vulnerable.

Up to 400 people died in care homes each day at the height of the pandemic. Care staff worked long hours struggling to nurse seriously ill residents without proper Personal Protection Equipment, leading to many being infected themselves. Covid-infected patients were discharged without testing to care homes, helping to spread the virus further. While care home residents with other health conditions had ‘Do Not Resuscitate’ notices attached to their files at the instruction of health managers – without consultation with families – as homes battled the infection.

As the country faces a second spike in the pandemic, it is clear the care sector desperately needs urgent reform. The Government, which has delayed its promise of change until next year, says it is investing hundreds of millions in the sector and making free PPE available to care homes.  But the NPC believes this may still not be enough to save lives and the heartbreak of even more families this winter.

The NPC’s new report, Goodbye Cinderella: A New Settlement for Care Services Moving On From the Pandemic’ – produced by a working party of health and care experts – calls for fundamental change  and provides a clear roadmap for creating a world-class National Care Service that befits one of the wealthiest countries in the world.

We hope to put together a panel of health and care experts, politicians and policymakers to join the authors of Goodbye Cinderella on 1st October – we invite you to email or post us questions for consideration to put to them.

Perhaps you have questions about:

  • Your own or your family’s experience of the care services, either at home or in a care home?
  • The government’s handling of the UK’s Covid-19 battle?
  • Perhaps your family or friends were casualties of the pandemic – do you have questions about their treatment, care, being able to see them in their hour of need?
  • If you have family who work in the care sector, what questions do you have about their experiences, their treatment, their health and pay as they care for our oldest and most vulnerable? What fears do you have as they face the second Covid spike?
  • What do you think is wrong with the UK’s health care system in general? ow How can we fix it?
  • What are the key barriers to the care services working well?
  • Do you think a National Care Service is the answer?
  • Is spending more money enough to fix the sector? (The Government announced half billion extra for care homes until next March 2021).
  • Should the Government be initiating the reform process now/by the end of 2020, rather than delaying it until 2021?  What would you ask them to do first as a matter of urgency?
  • What other issues about care would you like to ask about? Issues or problems you would like to fix?