At least 74,000 older people in England have died, or will die, waiting for care between the 2017 and 2019 general elections.
81 older people are dying every day, that is about three an hour, research by Age UK has found.
In the 18 months between the last election and the forthcoming one, 1,725,000 unanswered calls for help for care and support will have been made by older people. This, said the charity, was the equivalent of 2,000 futile appeals a day, or 78 an hour.Age UK’s director, Caroline Abrahams, said: “This huge number of requests for help did not lead to any support actually being given for three main reasons: because the older people died or will die before services were provided, because of a decision that they did not meet the eligibility criteria as interpreted by their local authority, or because their local authority signposted them to some other kind of help than a care service...Social care is not some kind of nice-to-have optional extra – it’s a fundamental service on which millions of older and disabled people depend every day. It is appalling that one and a half million older people in our country now have some unmet need for care – one in seven of the entire older population.”
The charity has also highlighted other issues that affect older people, including poverty, ageism, poor housing, loneliness and ill health.