Select Committee on Treasury Appendices to the Minutes of Evidence


Memorandum from the Continuing Care Conference

  The Continuing Care Conference (CCC) is a broad-based coalition of commercial, charitable and public service organisations with complementary experience and expertise and a shared interest in providing better care for older people, both now and in the longer term.

  With actuaries represented within CCC, the organisation is very conscious of demographic trends and the importance of collecting sound data on which to plan and provide for future services for older people. The ageing of the population has important consequences for the financing and provision of long-term care and the direction of Government policy in this area. In 1998, CCC commissioned a multidisciplinary study group to report on the prevention of dependency in later life. The group's report Fit for the Future: The Prevention of Dependency in Later Life noted that the compression of morbidity was the key to containing future long-term care costs and enhancing the wellbeing of older people. Our research highlighted several deficiencies in the availability of data. One of the main recommendations was that a long-term longitudinal survey should be established and maintained and that existing data sources should be reviewed and improved substantially, encouraging the sharing and linkage of those cross-sectional datasets available.

  The work of the GAD has been critical in enabling projections to be made in relation to the possible future demand for and cost of long-term care. Whatever changes to GAD's role and future status, it is important that such a function is not lost or diluted. Indeed, there needs to be an increase in such data collection and analysis. What is important is not necessarily where the function is located organisationally (GAD, Office for National Statistics, National Care Standards Commission, or wherever) but that it is properly resourced; contains appropriate expertise, including actuarial skills; does not lose its integrity; and is capable of being carried out and improved upon.

15 January 2001

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