NHS Continuing Healthcare

Understanding NHS Continuing Healthcare

For individuals with complex health needs requiring ongoing care, NHS Continuing Healthcare (CHC) provides a valuable option to access comprehensive support. NHS CHC covers the full cost of care, including home care services, for eligible individuals. In this informative guide, we will answer key questions such as what NHS CHC is, whether you can receive it in your own home, eligibility criteria, and the process to apply for this valuable funding.

What is NHS Continuing Healthcare?

NHS Continuing Healthcare is a funding package provided by the National Health Service (NHS) in the UK. It covers the full cost of care for individuals with complex, ongoing healthcare needs. NHS CHC aims to ensure that individuals receive the necessary support and services to manage their health conditions and maintain their quality of life. NHS Continuing Healthcare is based on an individual's care needs and not a particular condition and is only applicable in England. Unlike Local Authority (social care funding) it is not means tested.

Can I receive NHS Continuing Healthcare in my own home?

Yes, it is possible to receive NHS Continuing Healthcare in your own home. The NHS recognises that many individuals prefer to receive care in the familiar surroundings of their home, and if assessed as eligible, you have the right to choose this option. Home-based NHS CHC allows you to access a range of home care services, tailored to meet your specific needs, while maintaining the comfort and independence of living in your own home.

Am I eligible for NHS Continuing Healthcare?

You must be over the age of 18 and have to prove that you have a primary health need to be eligible for NHS Continuing Healthcare. A comprehensive two-step assessment of your care needs is carried out, details of which are below.

What is the process for applying for NHS Continuing Healthcare?

The process of applying for NHS Continuing Healthcare involves several steps:

  • Initial Assessment: This assessment is conducted by a healthcare professional, such as a GP or social worker. They will gather information about your healthcare needs and determine if you should proceed to a full assessment.

  • Full Assessment: A multidisciplinary team, comprising healthcare professionals from various disciplines, will conduct a comprehensive assessment. They will evaluate your needs using a decision support tool, which looks at different aspects of your health and care requirements.

  • Decision-Making: The multidisciplinary team will review the assessment findings and make a decision regarding your eligibility for NHS CHC. They will consider whether your needs meet the criteria outlined by the NHS.

  • Notification and Care Planning: If deemed eligible, you will receive a written notification outlining the decision. A care plan will be developed in collaboration with you and your healthcare team, focusing on your specific care needs and preferences.

  • Funding Arrangements: Once the care plan is in place, funding arrangements will be made to cover the cost of your home care services. This may involve direct payments to you or the care provider.

Useful Links

  • The organisation Beacon can help you navigate and understand the decision-making and appeals process. They offer up to 90 minutes free, independent advice funded by NHS England.

  • NHS Continuing Healthcare