Who pays for what across health and social care is anything but straightforward, and trying to navigate a path through this when there is an urgent or changing care need is invariably a difficult challenge.

Many people don't realise that there is a difference between health and social care, including that the former is free and the latter is means tested. For example, health care is free, provided and funded by the NHS. 

In contrast, The Local Authority (as opposed to the NHS) is only bound to provide social care services and this is means tested. For example, an individual who requires support getting dressed in the mornings and with transferring from room to room would be deemed to have social care needs. In this case, it would fall into the Local Authority’s remit and would not be the responsibility of the NHS.

Typical Costs of Care

According to a recent survey referred to in The Times Newspaper (14 Nov 2017) , fees for residential care homes had risen by 9.6% in the previous 12 months. Based on a comparison of fees charged by 124 residential homes, the survey found that the average fees across Britain had reached £33,094 a year, £2,978 higher than a year earlier.

However, the cost of a care home, either residential or nursing, varies considerably by region and the level of services and facilities available.

Home care costs can also vary hugely depending upon location. As with care homes, there are significant regional variations and costs will also depend on what sort of care your client needs, how many hours of care they need and what times of the day and week they need it.

The UK Home Care Association suggests an average figure of £18/19 per hour with full time care during the day starting at £30,000 per annum.

Establishing self-funder status

Key steps in establishing whether your care needs will have to be funded in part or in full by yourself or family include the following;

  1. Understanding the nature and extent of your care needs and the likely cost of meeting them.
  2. Understanding what care services you can secure free of charge from your local authority or other third party (e.g. charities and support services) to help meet these needs.
  3. If part of the need relates to health care, establishing whether you are eligible for free NHS Continuing Health Care funding (NHS CHC) – don’t forget, if you are not currently eligible, but your health deteriorates, your needs may become eligible in the future.
  4. If you are not eligible for NHS CHC, establishing whether you are eligible for NHS Funded Nursing Care (FNC).
  5. Understanding the extent to which your local authority will fund any assessed social care needs.
  6. Establishing whether you have any insurances that may cover some or all of your care costs.
  7. Understanding the impact (if any) that legislation may have on the funding of your care needs.
  8. Understanding your entitlement to state benefits.


Helping you to find your way

The care systems across the UK can be confusing and difficult to navigate, especially when you’re dealing with them for the first time, or in stressful circumstances where you are trying to get answers to urgent questions. Even worse is the fact that it’s difficult to know where to turn for reliable answers, or whether the answers you’re getting are accurate and up to date.

So we produced a selection of clear, accessible guides – from our guide getting the care you need, to our guide to accessing NHS Continuing Healthcare – to serve as reliable sources of information, support and guidance for anyone who is trying to find care, support or the right living environment for themselves or an older relative.

Click here to access our online store:

We have distilled years of experience supporting clients with the real, day to day issues that they face, as well as our practical understanding of the difference between what should happen in theory and what does happen in reality when people are trying to get the best outcomes for themselves or their loved ones.

Key Facts

  • One in eight people live for 8 years or more in a care home according to care annuities provider, JUST.
  • The UK has an ageing demographic.
  • Long term care if required, is on average the second largest form of expenditure in a lifetime after a mortgage.
  • Government budgets do not match the rising demand for care services.
  • Being able pay for your care affords you choice in terms of what care you receive, when you start receiving it, and where you choose to receive it.

Arrange a 1-Hour Consultation with an expert care adviser (£345)

If you have specific questions, a problem that needs fixing, or would simply like to ensure you are on the ‘front foot’ with your care planning to ensure you receive the care that’s needed and deserved, you might feel you need some tailored help and support.  That’s why we offer our personalised 1:1 telephone/online guidance sessions, where we take the time to get to know every single one of our clients and provide a personalised plan of action. Arrange yours today.