Age discrimination law welcomed by MPs and care sector

Coming into effect in October, the discrimination ban will mean that hospitals and care homes have a legal duty to achieve effective treatment regardless of age, with the possibility of legal action taken by patients if services have not respected their right to dignity or dismissed their needs because of age.

The law was originally part of the 2010 Equality Act passed by the last Labour government, though because some aspects of the Act had been dropped by the Coalition it remained unclear until now that the age discrimination law would survive.

Member of Parliament for Leeds North West, Greg Mulholland, who raised the issue in the Commons and is also chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Ageing and Older People, was among those to welcome the new law, commenting:

“There has been considerable concern and indeed evidence to show that the older people have been discriminated against, simply on the grounds of their age, as if they were less important because they were older.

“As we make dramatic improvements in our medical knowledge, we are living longer and healthier lives. It is important to make sure that when something does go wrong; people are not treated differently or subject to discrimination simply because of their date of birth.

“As co-chair for the Parliamentary group for Ageing and Older People, I have worked with Age UK to campaign for an end to age discrimination in the Health Service I am therefore delighted that with the introduction of these new laws to ensure that older people are being treated as individuals and with the level of care they deserve, based on need, not age.”

 

Sourced from Carehome.co.uk, 13th June 2012.