As we come towards the end of another year, we at Care To Be Different, wish to thank all our enquirers and contributors to our website and Facebook page for all your valuable posts and comments. We hope that you have found our free information and resource website useful, and also that we have been able to assist you through the NHS Continuing Healthcare Funding (CHC) minefield. Do get in touch if there are any matters you wish to discuss with us.
At this time of year, we like to look back at our numerous blogs and remind our readers of some of the key highlights in the year, as a refresher. It’s been a difficult choice, as ever, as there is so much content to choose from! Here’s a varied selection to show the breadth of free information available to help families fighting for NHS CHC Funding.
Wishing you all seasonal greetings and a happy, healthy and prosperous year ahead.
Best wishes from,
If you have a relative or friend already in care or about to go into care, then this article about Continuing Healthcare is for you! Too many people entering the care system have no idea that their significant care needs could be paid free of charge by the NHS – yes, every penny! However, as you guessed, accessing paid care from the NHS isn’t straightforward and nor do the NHS advertise the availability of this free care or readily volunteer to help you get it. The free care is called ‘NHS Continuing Healthcare’ (or ‘CHC’) and, due to the veil of secrecy surrounding its availability, it has often been described as the NHS’s best kept secret.
Read more to find out whether you or your relative may be eligible for CHC and how to get it…
There are a number of tiers, or stages, to go through when you are making/appealing a decision for Continuing Health Care Funding (CHC). Each one can cause tears! Read about the Checklist and DST stages and the potential frustrations that you might experience and how to respond. Don’t forget Part 2 either!
If your relative has passed the initial Checklist stage and is awaiting their full assessment for NHS Continuing Healthcare (CHC), they will be invited to a Multi-Disciplinary Team Meeting (MDT) which will consider their eligibility for CHC Funding – i.e. fully-funded care paid for by the NHS. Even if the MDT assessors recommend CHC Funding should be awarded, it’s never a foregone conclusion that the NHS Integrated Care Board will ultimately agree and support that recommendation. Read about the MDT process, the Gossip case and our handy Tips, so that you don’t have the wool pulled over your eyes!
If your relative has never been assessed by the NHS for CHC Funding, they may be entitled to make a retrospective claim for previously unassessed periods of care. Or if they were assessed, but that assessment was flawed, done incorrectly or simply not up to scrutiny – leading to a refusal to award CHC – then consider appealing! You could be entitled to reimbursement with interest of many thousands of pounds in wrongly charged care fees. Read this essential article about claiming your care fees retrospectively and what you need to prove your refund…
If your relative is about to be discharged from hospital into care, then this article helps you to understand how the CHC process upon discharge from hospital has changed and how it can benefit your relative now, so they don’t miss out on their entitlement to CHC Funding.
Not many people know that they can avoid delays and shortcut the standard NHS CHC assessment process by applying for immediate NHS funding using the Fast Track Process – if their relative has “a primary health need arising from a rapidly deteriorating condition and where that condition may be entering a terminal phase.” In that scenario, a fully-funded package of NHS care should be put in place within 48 hours of assessment to meet all their healthcare needs. Don’t miss out on Fast Track funding at a time when it is most critically needed.
Care home falls are one of the biggest fears and risk factors for fragile and elderly residents. Residents who are unsteady on their feet, or have cognitive impairment such as dementia, can be at high falls risk. Putting a relative into a care home can be a very traumatic and emotional time for families, as they effectively hand over control and entrust responsibility for their relative’s daily care to a third party. You rely on the care home’s integrity and professionalism to look after your loved one at a time when you are no longer able to. Yet so many residents fall at care homes, sadly often resulting in catastrophic effects on their wellbeing. This article looks at common reasons behind falls, associated problems of falling, the effects on the individual, and the impact it can have on their CHC application.
If your relative is immobile, or remains in a sitting or lying position for prolonged periods of time, PLEASE make sure that their skin integrity is regularly assessed for pressure damage! We hear too many sad stories of vulnerable and fragile patients who are left without any adequate pressure care. Failure to address this basic need can result in a rapid deterioration in their health and, more critically, an untimely demise – which is all so easily preventable with proper skin care.
Don’t assume everything is done correctly! Skin assessments can, and do, frequently get overlooked or rushed, and this can lead to incorrect care plans being implemented and/or inadequate steps then being taken to assess, monitor and prevent harm caused by pressure damage. Read this insightful article on causes and avoidance of pressure sores. Prevention is absolutely better than cure!
September: Understanding The Checklist Assessment
CHC is a package of fully-funded care, paid for by the NHS, and which is ’free at the point of need’. CHC is paid, regardless of the setting where the care takes place and irrespective of the recipient’s wealth (as it is not means–tested). Without CHC Funding, your relative may end up self-funding their care and paying for it out of private savings or even be forced to sell their home. In order to be considered for CHC your relative will need to engage with the CHC assessment process to determine their eligibility for NHS Funding. It all begins with the Checklist. Read more to find out what the Checklist is, how it works, and what you need to do to get started!
If you don’t succeed at MDT and you remain dissatisfied with the negative outcome decision, then you only have 6 months to appeal to the ICB’s Local Resolution Panel. Part 1 deals with that process and is essential reading for anyone who feels that their relative should qualify for CHC.
Part 2 of this blog deals with the next level of appeal to an Independent Review Panel at NHS England following a negative Local Resolution outcome. This is often the last realistic chance of getting an award of CHC. So be prepared! This article offers advice on what to expect and the need to draft good written appeal submissions to try and achieve a successful outcome.
If you have a relative with complex healthcare needs, who is either being cared for at home, in a care home, or about to be discharged from hospital into a care home or hospice, and you’ve never heard of NHS Continuing Healthcare Funding (or ‘CHC’), then you must read this article! It could save your relative from selling their home or paying thousands of pounds a month for their care fees. This article is essential reading for anyone new to CHC!
For those regular readers of our blogs, you’ll recognise that this was actually published in February, but we felt the message was too important to leave out!
Who will make day-to-day decisions for you and act in your best interests, in relation to your property and finances or your health and welfare, if one day you lose the mental capacity to make those decisions for yourself? Without any formal prior legal authority in place, vital decisions – whether about money or health – may take longer to be approved, if at all – or even be placed in the hands of total strangers. Some important decisions may be delayed or become so protracted that they become redundant, irrelevant, or even superseded by intervening events, if the moment has passed. That’s why it is important to make a Lasting Power of Attorney whilst you can. Read all about LPAs here, what’s involved and the advantages of taking this simple step early on. Don’t put it off!
We hope you’ve enjoyed our selection but there are hundreds more free articles to read on our caretobedifferent website. Just use the search bar to type in what you’re looking for. If you can’t find it, you can contact us by email with your enquiry or just visit our homepage.
We’ll be back in 2024 with more blogs! Let us know below if you have a specific topic you would like us to cover…