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Residential Care

Volume 178: debated on Wednesday 24 October 1990

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To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security whether he will make available the findings of the study of costs in residential care and nursing homes in Great Britain carried out by Price Waterhouse for his Department.

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security when he expects to make available the Price Waterhouse report on the cost of care in private residential and nursing homes; and if he will publish the report in full.

Running costs by type of care
Sample sizeRunning costs £Running costs and capital costsRunning costs and capital costs and profitStaff costs1
1 Included in "running costs" column 2.

Copies of the full Price Waterhouse report have today been placed in the Library. The survey has provided important information which has assisted my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State in making decisions on the April 1991 uprating of the income support limits, announced today.The overall objective of the survey carried out by Price Waterhouse was to identify the range of revenue arid capital costs of caring for people with different types and levels of dependency in homes of varying size and staff-resident ratios in different parts of Great Britain. The field work was carried out between July and August 1990 and the data collected related mainly to financial years commencing between October 1989 and May 1990. Although the number of homes initially approached was much larger, information was finally obtained from a total sample of 732 residential care and nursing homes. Not all these could provide information on capital costs in addition to that on running costs.The results of the survey show the difficulty of obtaining reliable and consistent data on costs for residential care and nursing homes. The figures obtained cover the period up to May 1990; assume a 90 per cent. occupancy rate in homes, which may be slightly lower than the actual occupancy level in homes. Unit costs reduce with higher occupancy levels; and are more reliable in some respects than others. Cost figures for voluntary sector homes in particular are based on a small sample size; and show that there is significant variation in the capital costs (including and excluding profits) that homes face, both within and across regions, indicating differences both in capital structure and accounting treatment.The key findings on costs are as follows:

Running costs—

The average bedweek costs obtained from the survey are shown in the table.