What is NHS funded care?

If you move into a nursing home, the NHS may help with the costs of the nursing care component of your fees. This is NHS funded nursing care.

The NHS will cover any fees relating to the nursing or medical care you receive from a registered nurse during your stay. Depending on your circumstances, this could be anything from planning your nursing care to supervising and monitoring of nursing and healthcare tasks as well as direct nursing care.

Funded nursing care is not means tested, so your income and savings have no bearing on whether you can get it or not and it does not matter if you are self-funding your care or whether the local authority is paying for your care.

Funded nursing care is funded by the Department of Health & Social Care and paid by NHS Dorset to nursing homes if you are resident in a Dorset nursing home and registered with a Dorset GP.

If you move to a nursing home for a period of respite, NHS Dorset will pay funded nursing care for up to six weeks without carrying out a full assessment. The nursing home will advise NHS Dorset as to whether your move is permanent or for a period of respite. If you decide to stay at the nursing home an assessment will then be arranged.

How am I assessed for NHS funded nursing care?

Your nursing home will inform NHS Dorset by completing a form and returning to us. They will also send us a copy of your nursing needs, known as a nursing needs assessment, as well as a consent form so we can share your information with your family or representatives. The nursing home will send this to us within 14 calendar days of your admission if you require nursing care. If you are already a resident in a nursing home, they will also inform us if you have a change in needs which means you should be assessed for funded nursing care.

On receipt of the form from the nursing home, NHS Dorset will assess whether you are eligible for funded nursing care. NHS Dorset will also consider whether you may be eligible for NHS continuing healthcare.

How much is NHS funded nursing care?

In England, the rate is £219.71 per week for 2023/2024. It changes on an annual basis with the Department of Health and Social Care usually announcing the rate in May or June of each year. The rate is effective from the 1 April of each year and a backdated payment is made once the new rate is announced.

NHS Dorset will make a payment directly to the nursing home. If you are paying for your own social care, this amount may be deducted from your bill. However, in some cases, funded nursing care may be paid to the nursing home in addition to the fees stated to you. You should speak to your nursing home to find out whether the fees quoted to you include funded nursing care and they will explain to your whether receiving funded nursing care reduces your bill or not. It’s a good idea to check your contract with your nursing home, this will include details of how the funding works in your specific circumstances.

If the local authority is funding your care, usually the fees quoted exclude funded nursing care. This is because the local authority will pay the nursing home direct for your social care, with the NHS paying the funded nursing care.

What is not included in NHS funded nursing care?

It does not include:

  • Time spent by non-nursing staff such as care assistants in providing your care

  • The costs of the wider non-nursing care

  • Your accommodation

Will entitlement to NHS funded nursing care be reviewed?

Entitlement will be reviewed initially after three months and then annually. Funding may stop if:

  • You no longer require nursing care

  • You are no longer resident in a nursing home

  • You become eligible for continuing healthcare

Depending on any hospital admission and the length of this, funded nursing care may also stop.

If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact the Personal Health Commissioning Team via continuing.care@nhsdorset.nhs.uk or telephone 0300 303 4410. 

What if I don’t agree with the outcome?

If you are dissatisfied with the outcome of a decision relating to your eligibility for funded nursing care, you are entitled to ask for a review of that decision. If you remain dissatisfied following local re-consideration, you can pursue the matter through the NHS complaints procedure. 

If you have any further questions, please do not hesitate to contact the Personal Health Commissioning Team via continuing.care@nhsdorset.nhs.uk or telephone 0300 303 4410. 

If you are a registered nurse in a nursing home please visit our professionals page for information relating to training and how to apply for funding.