Understanding the value of informal care by municipality
When informal care is taken over by the public or private sector in the Netherlands, it costs society between €32 billion and €44 billion a year. This is according to our research into the social costs and benefits of informal care. We have now also provided insight into this value per municipality through fact sheets, commissioned by MantelzorgNL. The calculations stem from our earlier research.
Informal care is not free. For instance, providing informal care costs time that could have been spent on paid work, a study or free time. Moreover, informal carers also incur costs themselves, such as travel and parking costs and expenses for extra groceries, medication and/or care attributes. The value of the time commitment and these costs can be high. For example, the value of the time commitment for the municipality of Rotterdam is estimated at between 556 and 914 million euros per year. Informal carers themselves are estimated to incur another 69 million euros in costs annually.
Moreover, employing a healthcare professional instead of a informal carer also costs money. For example, if all informal care in the municipality of Rotterdam were taken over by professionals, it would cost society between 1.2 and 1.7 billion euros a year. However, not all informal care tasks can be replaced by professional care. On the one hand because of the current shortage of care staff, but also because for some informal care tasks there is no alternative, such as emotional counselling.
Curious about the value of informal care for your municipality? Check out the fact sheets on the MantelzorgNL website (in Dutch). Interested in our social cost-benefit analysis of informal care? Please contact Tessa Huis in ‘t Veld.