EU social & employment ministers adopt EU report on long-term care, with Social Platform’s input
On 14 June 2021, the Social Protection Committee (SPC) and European Commission published their 2021 Joint Report on Long-Term Care. This report comes as a result of the Employment, Social Policy, Health and Consumer Affairs Council (EPSCO) meeting who endorsed the key conclusions of the report. The European Commission will draw on the findings of the report to prepare its initiative in 2022 on long-term care, as set out in the European Pillar of Social Rights (the Social Pillar) Action Plan.
Social Platform welcomes the opportunity to submit input to the report, together with other civil society organisations, public and not-for-profit service providers, and social partners. Our contribution can be found listed in report and can also be viewed below.
Principle 18 of the Social Pillar stipulates that everyone has the right to affordable long-term care services of good quality, in particular home care and community-based care. The report finds that demand for high quality long-term care is set to rise, with 38.1 million people projected as potentially needing it by 2050. The long-term care sector is currently overrepresented by women, who deliver both formal and informal care. Across the EU, only an average of one-third of people aged 65 or over with severe difficulty with personal care or household activities used homecare services in 2014. This indicates that there is a high dependence on informal care and a concerning risk of unmet care needs.
The findings of this report come at a timely moment as the EU and its Member States respond to the devastating impact of the COVID-19 crisis, which has worsened inequalities and brought to light significant weaknesses in our social protection systems. Accessing affordable and quality long-term care is a right for all people in the EU across the life-cycle, from early childhood to older age. It is a significant component to ensuring a socially just, equal and inclusive society that leaves no one behind.