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Care Forum Wales shames fees paid by “terrible ten” authorities

A “terrible ten” local authorities who pay the lowest care home fees in Wales have been named and shamed – with Swansea rock bottom.

According to industry representative Care Forum Wales (CFW), this forces care homes to work in an “untenable post code lottery” for fees.

CFW chair Mario Kreft MBE is calling for an urgent shake-up of the system by the new Welsh Government, with a new national fee structure that is “fair to all”.

Right at the foot of the table is Swansea where a 40-bed care home receives £230,000 less than a home in league leaders Torfaen in Gwent – or just over £5,700 per resident.

The gulf is likely to be even wider in July when Cardiff Council publish their new rates because last year’s fees were higher than the increased payments announced in Gwent for 2021/22.

Last year’s fees in Cardiff would still put them at the top of the table – the old rate in the capital is £1,600 a year more per resident than the new increased fee in Torfaen.

Newport negotiates separately with individual providers so it was not possible to include it in the table but it is in line with the generally higher rates paid in the South East of Wales while Merthyr Tydfil County Borough Council had not yet revealed their fees for the coming year.

The table had, said Mr Kreft, flagged up a real North South divide because five of the six local authorities in North Wales were in the bottom 10.

The only exception in North Wales was Conwy County Borough Council which was described by Care Forum Wales “as the best of the worst” after finishing in 14th spot.

But there was praise for Powys County Council who had shot up the rankings with fee increases of up to 22 per cent after coming bottom of the heap last year when they paid £12,000 a year less per care home resident than Cardiff Council did for the same level of care.

At a meeting in March, the council’s cabinet approved a report which recommended that the fees they pay to independent residential homes should increase to £120 per person per week.

Cllr Myfanwy Alexander, who has the portfolio for adult social care, told the meeting: “We were subject to some Wales-wide publicity when it was revealed we pay less for our care than anywhere else.

“We need to put our money where our mouth is. It’s all very well saying we value care, but we also need to pay for it.”

RegionLAResRes EMINursingNursing EMIAverage for LA Percentage Increase 
C&VCardiff (20-21 rate)737.89793.48730.08786.99762.11  Awaited 
GwentTorfaen689.64757.19721.83755.86731.13 4.50
GwentMonmouthshire670.00747.00708.00734.00714.75 5.99 – 6.11
W WalesPembrokeshire658.71717.45679.12735.90697.80 1.09 – 2.12
C&VVale of Glam659.98730.12659.98730.12695.05 4.00
GwentBlaenau Gwent628.00718.00690.00732.00692.00 2.30
N WalesConwy611.00665.00693.00733.00675.50 4.30 – 4.50
W WalesCeredigion644.00686.00658.00700.00672.00 6.36 – 6.65
CMTRhondda CT649.00688.00656.00694.00671.75 1.72
PowysPowys659.00669.00660.00698.00671.50 19.68 – 22.26
CTMBridgend628.00670.00648.00690.00659.00 2.50
N WalesGwynedd586.32650.79676.48714.91657.13 3.41 – 3.62
CTMMerthyr592.00657.00660.91708.71654.66 1.08 – 1.72 
N WalesWrexham608.72634.81660.88699.97651.10 3.93 – 4.34 
N WalesAnglesey596.01631.40657.04714.92649.84 3.47 – 3.62
N WalesFlintshire607.00632.79651.28689.92645.25 4.03 – 4.40
GwentCaerphilly615.00671.00612.00675.00643.25 3.50
N WalesDenbighshire586.32631.40657.04695.49642.56 3.50
W WalesCarmarthenshire622.73650.37601.47694.49642.27 4.50 – 4.81 
Swansea BayNeath PT619.96619.96627.57660.23631.93 4.00
Swansea BaySwansea576.00576.00653.00678.00620.75 2.00
All Wales Average£630.73£676.04£664.84£710.69£670.54 4.29 – 4.62%
  Annual Difference between highest and lowest£8,418.28£11,308.96£4,008.16£5667.48£7,350.72   

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