Ministers may slash personal care budget (update)

Some 120,000 people who currently get a personal budget to buy care services could lose the money under government plans to slash spending on healthcare, the Telegraaf reports on Monday.

Sources have told the paper an option to drastically shake-up the AWBZ long term care insurance scheme is one of several which will be discussed by the cabinet later this week.
MPs have described the cuts as ‘incomprehensible’ and an ‘unheard of attack on the right to care’.
Some 130,000 people who need extra care – such as the frail elderly or handicapped – currently claim a personal budget to pay for home nursing and other services. In 2003, the figure was 50,000.
One in 10
But the paper says if the proposal goes through, just 13,000 will qualify for the extra cash and the rest will have to turn to the traditional healthcare sector.
Some €2.7bn has been earmarked for personal budgets this year.
The paper says the cuts have been agreed between the minority government and alliance partner PVV, which supports efforts to cut spending in return for tougher immigration controls.
The AWBZ is a social insurance policy paid for by everyone to fund long term care. Premiums account for some two-thirds of spending, the government contributes 25% and patient fees make up the rest.
Earlier this year, it emerged the government is considering stopping people with an IQ of between 70 and 85 from using AWBZ-funded sheltered housing or day care as part of its spending cuts.
Earlier stories
IQ tests for special care services height of stupidity, say experts

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