New research by Which? concludes that 48 per cent of people who had arranged care for themselves or a relative/friend said there were no places available in at least one of the local care homes they considered.
Half of respondents needed to wait for a bed, with one in five settling for a care home that they had some reservations about. 16 per cent stated that they had been forced to move to a care home outside their local area.
The new research supports a previous claim from Which? that UK care home provision will hit crisis levels within next five years. By 2022, the majority of councils in England will experience a shortfall in care home places unless urgent action is taken.
Eighty-seven per cent of councils will not have enough places to meet potential demand. In fourteen council areas, a shortfall of 25% or more is forecast.
Across England as a whole, it is estimated that an additional 42,000 care home beds will be required by 2022. The fact that it can take between five and seven years to plan, build and open a new care home, means that urgent action is required now.