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2m retirees 'have no plans for care'

20th December 2006

Nearly two million elderly people in the UK with cash to spare have no plans for long-term care, new research from investment company Fidelity International has found.

The research revealed two thirds (69 per cent) of 55 to 75-year-olds did not intend to hold back funds for future care. Of the 24 per cent who did, a third (37 per cent) will reserve under £25,000 – the cost of care for just one year.

The research paper estimates the average stay in a nursing home at three years, but cites EU figures suggesting a man could spend eight years and a woman ten years in ill health.

However, two thirds (66 per cent) of men did not intend to save for this, compared to three quarters (74 per cent) of women.

"Longer lives can mean more time in retirement but also more time in poor health – a message that sadly does not seem to be getting through," said president of institutional business at Fidelity International, Simon Fraser.

He recommended people "start saving regularly", warning: "This all tells us that a significant chunk of a generation, those on the cusp of retirement, could spend their retirement in both poverty and ill health."