HC Deb 14 July 1987 vol 119 cc461-2W
Dr. Moonie

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services (1) what rates of board and lodging benefits are payable to persons in private, charitable or voluntary old people's homes; and when they were last reviewed;

(2) when he next proposes to review the levels of benefits payable to persons in old people's homes; and whether he will be taking full account of the real cost of accommodation and support in such homes.

Mr. Scott

Supplementary benefit claimants in independent residential care and nursing homes for the elderly can have their fees met in full up to maximum weekly amounts which are currently £130 in a residential care home (£145 where the elderly claimant is blind or very dependent), and £175 in a nursing home. An extension of up to £17.50 is payable in homes in the Greater London area. Claimants also receive a personal expenses allowance of £9.25. Increases were last made on 6 April 1987, following a review which took account of a range of information on costs and charges including a report on changes in costs by management consultants Ernst and Whinney, which has now been placed in the Library. The next general uprating of benefits will he in April 1988, and the position of people in homes will again be considered, taking account of similar factors, in advance of that date. The Department would welcome any fresh information from hon. Members or other sources which might assist that process.