In response to a new report from the Local Government Ombudsman, ‘Counting the Cost of Care’, Janet Morrison, Chief Executive of Independent Age, the older people’s charity said:

 “We welcome the Local Government Ombudsman’s (LGO) report. It highlights the fact that some care homes charge the families of residents an unfair ‘top-up’ fee, which can run to hundreds of pounds a week, and that some councils turn a blind eye to this practice. Independent Age’s report, ‘The Secret Subsidy’, drew attention to this in 2013 and, as a consequence, the new Care Act puts a clear legal duty on councils to ensure families are protected. To date, however, we have seen little evidence that poor practices have changed. The LGO’s report is a wake-up call to councils and councillors that the practice of asking relatives for unfair ‘top-up’ fees must stop. ”

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