In a report entitled Under Pressure – Tackling the Financial Challenge for Councils of an Ageing Population, the Audit Commission warns that councils do not know enough about the cost implications of changing demographics.
It says: “An ageing population has a range of impacts. If care service costs simply increase with the population they could nearly double by 2026.
“Most councils don’t know enough about the costs of their ageing population, or the savings from preventative and collaborative action to take important decisions.”
The report says councils will be expected to find billions of pounds of extra savings as public spending reduces over coming years.
It urges councils to undertake work now, supported by tools and guidance given by the Audit Commission, to address the funding gap.