The ABI has called for a national awareness campaign on the public's right to social care once the Care and Support Bill is published in the spring.
Speaking to a seminar on financing care held by Lord Lipsey in Parliament, Dr Yvonne Braun head of savings, retirement and social care at the ABI [pictured], noted that one of the main recommendations of the Dilnot Commission is to encourage people to plan ahead.
She said: "To achieve this Dilnot recommended that Government invest in an awareness campaign. He also said this campaign should be linked to wider work on pensions and savings. We think that is right.
"What we really need is a culture change in the way people fund later life in general, both in terms of retirement income and funding social care."
Her speech added what is needed to support a long term care market is consistent demand for products and that a prerequisite for this is an understanding of the individual's rights and responsibilities in terms of social care in later life.
She also noted that many people not in care yet of failing health fail to buy enhanced annuities.
"There needs to be considerable change in the way our members liase with their customers, both in their written literature and in the sales process," she said.
"Many more would benefit from an immediate needs annuity, if only there was better advice. We estimate six or seven times more sales would be made. Financial advice is critical and we have been advocating its inclusion in the care and support Bill.
"People are unclear of their responsibilities, for example the ABI's consumer research, one in three believe that long term care is free, so there is no point in planning for it.
"An awareness campaign is key. Soon people will need to understand how a new system works and what the cap means and this will not be exactly straight forward. There is a lot of complexity that needs to be worked through the system."
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