Care home fees: How can you afford it?

    Care home fees: How can you afford it?

    The key point to remember before you consider care home fees is: have you been correctly assessed for your care needs? Often someone will miss out on funding because they have not been correctly assessed.

    In which circumstances should Continuing Healthcare (CHC) Funding assessment take place?

    Circumstances where assessment should take place include:

    • In hospital prior to discharge to a care home or even to your own home with a package of care
    • In your own home if you are no longer coping and need support and assistance
    • While in a care home if your needs change and more assistance and support is required
     

    Even if you have been assessed and eligibility for funding has been rejected it is still possible to challenge this decision and appeal if you think the decision is wrong, particularly if care needs have increased due to a deterioration in your health.

    Often funding is missed by those receiving Funded Nursing Care who do not realise that more funding is available to pay for accommodation if care needs dictate eligibility.

    Read more: Continuing healthcare assessment: Am I eligible for NHS funding?

    Is CHC Funding means-tested?

    Don’t be fooled that because you have savings you will never be eligible for funding. CHC assessors will often start talking about funding before you have been assessed. The starting point should always be the care assessment and for CHC this begins with the initial Checklist.

    What is a Continuing Healthcare Checklist?

    A Continuing Healthcare Checklist is the first stage in determining whether an individual is entitled to free care.

    It is important that you do not get drawn into a discussion about assets and income from the outset. The first criteria is whether there is a healthcare need, not what you can afford. CHC Funding is not means-tested and depends entirely on whether a person has a primary healthcare need and is eligible for funding.

    What is a primary healthcare need?

    There is no legal definition, however ‘The National Framework’ explains that there are four main characteristics of need which 'may help to determine’ whether the quality or quantity of care required is more than the limits of the local authority’s responsibilities.

    What is the National Framework?

    This guidance sets out the principles and processes of the National Framework for NHS Continuing Healthcare and NHS Funded Nursing Care.

    Therefore, from the outset it is important to get an early Checklist Assessment. Don’t talk about finances before this. No decision should be taken on using assets to pay for care and, most importantly, the sale of a home until the correct care assessment procedure has been followed.

    If your care is to be funded by the NHS this could potentially solve financial worries and the emotional stress of worrying about how you will pay for your care.

    Do you need help and advice with funding issues?

    To find out whether you may be eligible for funding, please do not hesitate to contact our team who will be happy to help.

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    For legal advice on NHS Continuing Healthcare funding

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