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Council facing care problems as Somerset's ageing population rises
3:30pm Tuesday 17th July 2012 in News
SOMERSET County Council has admitted it will struggle to offer high standards of care to elderly residents across the county.
Latest Census figures show that the number of people living in Somerset aged 80 and above has jumped a huge 25% over the past decade, putting huge pressure on the council’s care budgets.
There has also been a big jump in numbers of residents aged 60 to 69, as post-war baby boomers reach retirement age.
Now, the council has said it is facing serious problems to maintain a high level of care for the elderly.
Cabinet member Christine Lawrence said: “These new Census figures confirm what the Council already knows – that the demand for adult care services is rocketing, at a time went we face huge Government cutbacks in our income.
“It is a national problem, but here in Somerset these figures show just how difficult it will be to balance budgets and the standards of care we are able to offer an ageing population.
“We are lobbing government to make sure that ministers understand the levels of problems we are facing here in Somerset.”
The Census results show that over the decade, Somerset’s population increased by 6.4% to 530,000. The largest proportion of this increase was in the Sedgemoor area, with a small fall recorded in West Somerset.