Can this be true? And if it is what does it tell us about our broken system of adult social care?

One of the country’s biggest providers of agency health workers has been accused of “profiteering” after trying to charge care homes up to £2,700 to supply a staff member for a single shift.

The Guardian can reveal that Newcross Healthcare, already exposed for fining workers £50 when they call in sick, quoted the sky-high charges in a price list sent out to homes looking for cover over Christmas.

Newcross – which supplies thousands of agency health workers to care homes, many of whose residents have their fees paid by local councils – stated that it would be charging triple its normal Sunday day rates to supply staff on Christmas Day and Boxing Day.

According to a price list seen by the Guardian, the firm normally charges £76.84 an hour to supply a head of care, also known as a matron, for a Sunday day shift. At triple rates of £230.52 an hour, this would cost a care home £2,766 for a 12-hour shift.

The company also charges £59.12 an hour to supply a nurse for a Sunday day shift. At a triple rate of £177.36 an hour, it would mean a 12-hour shift for a nurse would cost a care home £2,128.

A normal Sunday rate for a senior carer is £30.12, the document states.

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