Funding long-term care for older people: Lessons from other countries

Carolyn Glendinning, Bleddyn Davies, Linda Pickard and Adelina Comas-Herrera

An evaluation of how other countries are devising fair and sustainable ways of funding long-term care for older people.

Like the UK, many other countries are facing challenges in devising fair and sustainable ways of funding the long-term care needed by new generations of older people. While the challenges are similar, their responses are sometimes very different from our own. Nevertheless, their experiences can provide valuable lessons for the UK.

This report draws on the experiences of long-term care funding – both the raising of revenue and the mechanisms by which it is allocated to services and allowances – in Australia, Austria, Denmark, France, Germany, Japan, Netherlands, Scotland and the United States.

These arrangements are evaluated in terms of:

  • their promotion of horizontal and vertical equity;
  • their efficiency and effectiveness;
  • the extent to which they promote dignity, choice and independence for older people;
  • their economic and political sustainability;
  • their approaches to the provision of unpaid family care; and
  • the role of user charges in long-term care funding arrangements.
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