Sunday, 27 October 2013

Britain is no country for those lonely old men who once enjoyed companionship in an English day care centre

Should Government Health Secretary, Jeremy Hunt, be accused of hypocrisy for saying that British people don’t care enough for their lonely old men and women ? 

Richard Furze, Chief Executive of the charity 'Friends Of The Elderly', clearly thinks he is when he says : "Policy rhetoric about preventative services without funding is surely hypocritical. The Government should not be too quick to tell others what more they should do when they are cutting funding for services such as community transport and day centres that are a lifeline to so many older people." 

 Is he right ?

The facts are that :

* day care centre figures from the 'NHS Information Service' show that in 2010 there were 88,498 old people using centres in England, which fell to 68,160 by 2012 and 55,655 by 2013. 

*  In some regions such as the West Midlands, the numbers plummeted by 52% per cent while the drop was 46% cent in London.

'Yes', he is right, despite the fact that a Department of Health spokesman weighed in to support his Secretary with : "Day centres can provide a valuable service but the wider problem of loneliness needs to be tackled by a change in attitude by society. There is no substitute for each and every lonely person having someone to visit them."

This wouldn't cut much ice with old men in Derby where the BBC reported :
The last remaining day care centre for the elderly in Derby could close because of spending cuts.


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