Is there some method by which this could have been predicted?

We don'rt think that this was a desired outcome:

Elderly people are quietly being denied support by councils struggling to cope with funding cuts and rising carer bills fuelled by the National Living Wage, new analysis shows.

The flagship Government policy, which came into effect in April and guarantees £7.20 an hour for those aged 25 and over, has left English councils searching for an extra £600 million, according to the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS).

Overall, local authorities need an extra £1.1bn just to maintain the level of care they provided last year, the ADASS report reveals.

Actually, we think there is a method that could have been used to predict this. That basic part of economics on the introductory page of every book everywhere - supply and demand.

Except in the very strange circumstances that something is a Giffen Good, and labour is not one, when the price of something rises people will attempt to economise on their purchases of that thing.

Raise the wages being paid to carers and the people who are paying for carers will hire fewer of them.

Yes, yes, we know that George Osborne said this wouldn't happen and we all know that we can trust George. Except reality has different ideas it seems.