The population of the European Union is ageing: the number of people aged 80 and over is expected to increase by 88 per cent over the next 30 years. Principle 18 of the European Pillar of Social Rights, the right to long-term care (LTC), will be ever more important.
Yet the response to the booming demand for LTC has been decentralised, fragmented and in many countries market-driven, resulting in geographical and socio-economic disparities in access. Staff shortages, exacerbated by low pay and poor working conditions, have made the situation more challenging.
The European Care Strategy, published on 7 September 2022, largely takes stock of these trends which have characterised the care sector over the last decade. It recognises that care is a public good, and that structural changes to the care sector are needed to realise the rights enshrined in the European Pillar of Social Rights.
You can read EPSUs reaction to the care strategy here.