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Age Concern calls for dignity funding

21st April 2006


Age Concern has called for government funding to back ministerial proposals to improve the dignity of elderly people receiving care in hospitals and care homes.

The health minister Liam Byrne used yesterday's publication of the government's second phase of its ten year elderly healthcare plan to call for greater dignity for the elderly in care.

Age Concern's director-general Gordon Lishman told BBC One's lunchtime news he was delighted that ministers were taking the issue seriously but insisted the measures would make only make minimal gains unless significant funding is provided.

The scheme "will not make anything like as much difference as if the chancellor was willing to put significant sums of money into ensuring that older people had a decent and dignified life", he said.

"The question is, are you actually going to be able to back your fine words with cash?"

He added that he hopes the government will consider the funding issue during its next spending review.

Should the money materialise it is expected to provide hospitals with a dignity nurse, who would ensure that elderly patients are being cared for properly.