The different ways of paying for care
There are four ways of funding care home fees and these are:
- Funding your own care [self-funding] – where you fund your ‘social care’ entirely from your own private resources. If you have savings or assets valued over £23,250 you will pay the full cost of your care home fees until your savings and assets reduce down to £23,250. Social services will do a financial assessment once you reach this level to work out exactly what contribution they will put towards your care
- Public funding of social/personal care – if you need help with personal care such as bathing, washing, dressing, eating, and you have savings or assets valued under £23,250 then social services may contribute towards your care. This is determined by a financial assessment and also whether you need care in a care home or care provided in your own home.
- Funded Nursing Care (FNC) – if you require a nurse in a nursing home, then the nursing care element is free (funded by the NHS) and usually paid directly to the care home. However, you will still need to pay the social or personal care part of the care home fees. This will be covered in your care home contract.
- Continuing Healthcare Funding (CHC) – if you qualify for CHC funding following a two stage process, all your care should be paid for by the NHS irrespective of the place the care is provided. Individuals must have what is called ‘a primary health need’ and the assessment for this is fairly complex (the assessment covers numerous areas individually and then involves a further assessment of whether you have complex, intensive or unpredictable needs).
Advice about paying for care
It’s important to get professional advice on the best way to fund the cost of care and we suggest that you take advice from a care fees expert to make sure that you have explored all the options available to you.
In order to make life easier we have contacted a national care fees planning specialist, Symponia, who are dedicated to the financial issues of later life, in particular the payment of care fees. Read more about how Symponia can help you and download their helpful handbook.