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CARE COSTS FOR ELDERLY COULD ROCKET

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The care of hundreds of thousands of people in nursing and residential homes could be jeopardised by the European U...
The care of hundreds of thousands of people in nursing and residential homes could be jeopardised by the European Union's new working hours rules, according to the Sunday People (p23).

The Working Times Directive will limit the number of hours people can work to 48 in a week and that may mean managers in homes, caretakers and wardens in sheltered accommodation cannot be on call 24 hours a day as they are now.

Liberal Democract MP Mike Hancock raised the issue with trade and industry minister Ian McMartney who, says the newspaper, admitted he didn't have a clue what the directive's effect would be on the UK's 10,000 homes.

Mr Hancock predicted that unless such carers are exempted, as doctors and nurses are, the cost of residential care will rocket because more staff will be needed to comply with the EU directive.
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