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How to apply for care funding
If you or a loved one requires full-time continuing care, whether provided by a residential care or nursing home or courtesy of a live-in carer in your own home, but cannot pay for it yourself you may be eligible to receive funding which covers some or all of the cost.
Depending upon the nature of the care required you can apply for care funding to your local authority or to the NHS.
How to apply for care funding from your local authority
Current UK Government legislation states that anyone who needs health or social care as a result of old age; mental illness or learning difficulties or physical or sensory disabilities should be able to obtain care services and support, tailored to their individual needs whether provided in the home or in a residential facility.
The provision of social funding from your local authority is dependent upon two assessments: an assessment of your care needs and a financial assessment.
Everyone, whether or not they are seeking local authority funding for care, is entitled to an assessment of their care needs. Such an assessment is beneficial as it can help to identify those care providers which are best equipped to meet the needs of the person requiring care.
Following the assessment of your care needs your local authority will need to assess your finances to determine whether or not you are eligible for the partial or complete funding of care provision. Broadly speaking, if your financial assets are valued at less than £23,250 you should be eligible for care funding from your local authority. If their value is below £14,250 you should be entitled to the highest level of subsidy although you may still be expected to contribute a proportion of your income.
The first step to apply for care funding from your local authority is to contact them in order to arrange a care needs assessment. Contact details for your local authority can be found using the UK Government’s local authority search engine.
How to apply for care funding from the NHS
If you, your partner or a family member has complex, ongoing healthcare needs and is not hospitalised, you may be eligible for NHS Continuing Health Care. This is the collective name for a package of care that is arranged and funded solely by the NHS.
Unlike care services arranged through your local authority, which you may still be required to pay for in part subject to a financial assessment; NHS Continuing Health Care is provided entirely free-of-charge to those who qualify for it.
As with local authority funding, to apply for care funding from the NHS it is necessary to undergo an assessment of your condition and care needs. To qualify for NHS Continuing Health Care the assessors must be satisfied that you have “a complex medical condition and substantial and ongoing care needs. You must have a "primary health need", which means that your main or primary need for care must relate to your health”.
Whilst specific health conditions, the choice of care provider and the location in which care is to be received have no bearing upon the assessment, having a disability or a long-term illness or condition do not automatically mean that you qualify for care funding.
The first step to applying for care funding from the NHS is to arrange an initial screening with your GP, nurse or healthcare advisor. They will use an assessment known as the Checklist Tool which compares your health and care needs against a list of eligibility criteria.
If the outcome of the initial screening suggests that you may be eligible to receive NHS Continuing Health Care you will be referred for a full assessment of your healthcare needs with a team of health and social care professionals. They will then make a recommendation to your local Clinical Commissioning Group which has the final say as to whether or not you will receive funding.
Even if you are deemed ineligible for NHS Continuing Health Care there may be other options for partial NHS care funding which may be open to you.
The fully-managed live-in home care services provided by The Good Care Group enable you or your loved one to receive care that is precisely tailored to your needs in the safety and comfort of your own home. You can find out more about our award-winning live-in care and the benefits it provides here. Alternatively, to speak to someone about your live-in care requirements please call us on 020 3728 7577.