It has now been six weeks since the introduction on 1st April of the National living Wage. Leading up to this there were dire warnings of what may happen as a result of this. It would have been easy for SECHA to jump on the bandwagon and moan about the rising costs, but we decided not to. The government statisticians. economists, pundits from every political persuasion will be scanning through every report and piece of information to see what the effects will be on inflation, jobs, the economy, industry and many other areas. So SECHA will not be doing that…

Having said that of course a report came out last week saying that 25% of care homes will close in the next three years because rising costs are making care homes financially non-viable. This is not just due to the national living wage but many other factors as well. Some say that 25% is a conservative figures and warn it could be higher. So what does this mean?

Well SECHA have warned about the return of modern day work houses. An extreme and unrealistic view perhaps. However with beds being reduced by 25% and a rising need for residential care due to the aging population. The laws of demand and supply dictate that prices will rise as products become scarce. This will affect mostly the market which applies to publicly funded beds. Already there is a move by some councils to increase their fees in order to secure beds for their most vulnerable clients. This is to be applauded. However there are still the majority of councils who believe they control the market and pay even less year on year. SECHA is saying this they do at their own peril

The reality is that they will not get a bed at that price and already some councils are struggling to find beds. So what will happen?

The old will be left in their own homes, put to bed by overworked carers, that is on the basis agencies can find carers in the first place. At a time that the carer turns up this could be at 5pm and left in bed unattended to try and survive the night, left potentially covered in feaces and soaked in Urine until the carer turns up at some stage the next day. We said SECHA would tell you as we see it, even if that is uncomfortable.

Well the future could easily be;-

The repugnant smell of feaces and a urine soaked body will greet the carer when they open the door to the flat bedroom or house! The poor individual will not be aware of how bad they smell because they have become accustomed to it. Their final cup of tea or drink may have been before 5 pm and that assumes a carer comes to get them up at 10.00am which it is not unreasonable to assume. That is 13 hours without any food or drink.. Prisoners who murder get a better deal than that! Would we leave a dog without water for 13 hours?? No.

Let’s hope the carer is given sufficient time which is more than 15 minutes to wash the individual change them give them a drink and something to eat before going to their next call.

A modern day work house? That may well be a better scenario than that which has just been described.

Would you want to live under these conditions?

Tell SECHA what you think. Phone the administrator or email him so that we can put your views to those that can make a difference. If you don’t you could be the one ended up covered in urine and feaces. Your Call Do something or don’t moan when it comes to your time.