a doodle of a family protected by two handsEurofound has released a report titled “Access to care services: Early childhood education and care, healthcare and long-term care” which investigates the issue of access to three types of care services that are essential for social protection and inclusion: early childhood education and care (ECEC), healthcare and long-term care (LTC).

It develops a theoretical framework for access to such care services, and outlines barriers to the take-up of care services and differences in access issues between population groups in the EU.

The key findings include:

  • Policymakers should pay attention to the various outcomes across the spectrum of access problems, not just unmet needs. People may eventually meet their care needs but face difficulties throughout the process.
  • Unaffordability is a key barrier but reducing the cost of care will not address this, if broader household income and expenditure needs are not taken into account.
  • To effectively enforce the right to access, it is important to focus on the multiple dimensions along the whole process, from identifying to meeting needs, addressing household, organisational and societal factors.
  • Many people do not use early childhood education and care or long-term care due to having informal care arrangements in place – but could benefit from using the services if they were more affordable, better-tailored or of higher quality.
  • To become more resistant to economic shocks, access to healthcare should rely less on income and employment

Eurodiaconia will continue its advocacy in the area of Long-term Care, as we believe that everyone should have access to quality and affordable care. Our members provide care to the elderly and our network provides room for exchanging and promoting best practices, such as our upcoming online Network meeting on Long-term care.


Members interested in this event, please register as soon as possible.

You can also read our recent report on the impact of COVID on LTC facilities.

For more information on Eurofound’s publication, please visit their website.