Fury as families are told to cough up £200 ‘virus tax’ at care homes

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Residents who pay extortionate fees to subsidise council fees are being clobbered for an additional 15 percent, Age UK has found. This amounts to an extra £127.65 for a typical self-funder in England, already paying an average of £851 a week – though this is often far higher. The bills are to cover the cost of personal protective equipment, more cleaning and a rising wages as staff with the virus claim sick pay and more expensive agency workers have to be brought in. 

The majority of older people living in care homes in England now have to pay for their own care, many have had to sell their home or use their life savings to do so.

Relatives of Agincare care home residents have spoken of their outrage after being told they must pay almost £200 a month for PPE.

The families, who pay about £4,000 a month, were shocked to receive an invoice for a “PPE surcharge” of £6.47 a day for April. 

Jan Urquijo’s mother Pauline, 93, pays £939 a week to stay at Agincare’s Blenheim home in Bournemouth. 

Mrs Urquijo said: “The care home industry is not losing money like other businesses, they are still getting their money every month whether it’s from individuals, social services or the NHS. I’m horrified.”

Derek Luckhurst, the owner of Agincare, said: “We are not asking residents to pay for PPE, we are asking them to contribute towards significantly increased care costs.”

There are around 400,000 in England living in care homes. Some 167,000 are self-funders and 45,000 are part self-funders. Anyone with more than £23,250 in assets does not get State help.

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