BRITAIN’S crisis-hit care sector is being pushed to the brink of complete collapse, it is claimed.
An ageing population, rising costs and a lack of funding has forced up the number of “financially stressed” care homes – and the result could be their imminent closure.
As many as 1,210 care companies – or 16 per cent of the 7,497 registered with Companies House – are exhibiting signs they are at risk of failure.
Last year the at-risk total was 12 per cent, according to research by accountancy firm Moore Stephens.
One of the major drivers of the rise was the increase to the National Living Wage in April, which placed a significant burden on care homes’ profit margins.
It increased to £7.50 per hour in April, and is scheduled to increase to £9 by 2020.
Figures from social services directors estimate that the living wage will cost councils around £151million, plus at least £227.5million in implementation and associated costs, in 2017/18.