Later Life Experts Warn Of Impending Care Crisis
New stats show the UK population is living longer than ever, prompting fears from lawyers on how the UK is planning for the later life crisis.
The Office of National Statistics (ONS)’ latest report on life expectancy, published today (2 December), revealed babies born in 2018 can expect to live on average 87.6 years for boys and 90.2 years for girls.
More concerning is that despite those aged 65 in 2018 expecting to live an average of 19.9 years longer for men and 22 years for women – there is no particular plan in place from the state to solve the social care crisis.
Leading national law firm Irwin Mitchell’s later life survey, which polled over 2,000 UK adults on what they were doing to plan for later life care, found that just 9% were taking steps towards saving for care home fees – and a massive 80% were not currently putting away funds.
The news comes amidst growing national concern about the care crisis, with one in eight people dying from dementia and Alzheimer’s in 2018. In the UK the number of people living with dementia is anticipated to hit one million by 2021.
The stats have prompted concern from Irwin Mitchell’s later life experts, who have spoken extensively about the impending later life crisis and criticised the lack of response from politicians.
Expert Opinion“We all know the UK population is living longer thanks to advances in modern medicine, and now children born in 2018 can expect to live until 87 for boys and 90 for girls on average. However as we do not yet have a cure for dementia or Alzheimer’s, people are living for longer but requiring much more care – which costs serious money.
“There is a desperate need for a social care plan to be put in place by the government, but nobody can come up with a suitable answer as the social care green paper has now been delayed indefinitely. Our later life statistics from earlier this year show an even bleaker picture, with just 9% of adults saving for future care fees.
“Sadly, it is inevitable that the state pension age should eventually be raised, as it has not yet accounted for the rapid rise in life expectancy. For now, planning for care as you would plan for children’s university fees, a house deposit or a pension should be the first priority for those who wish to have a comfortable later life. Investing in legal and financial planning for later life may well be the best investment you can make in yourself.” Kelly Greig - Partner
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