To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what plans he has to change the rules relating to the payment of residential allowance during absences from residential care and nursing homes.
A number of representations have been received recently from Members and others on this issue. In the light of the concerns raised we have carefully considered all the implications for the new community care arrangements, particularly for local authorities. We have decided to extend the payment of residential allowance for absences of up to six weeks due to admission to hospital and up to three weeks for other reasons. Details of the new arrangements will be announced shortly.