Your care funding application and appeal is much easier with the right notes to hand.
When you’re acting on behalf of a relative who needs care – whether that care is full time or otherwise – there are so many things to think about.
You’re probably visiting your relative regularly, making sure their care seems appropriate, resolving any problems, making sure they have the things they need, managing their finances, keeping an eye on their house – all sorts of things.
If you’re also applying for NHS funding to cover care fees, this can add another thick layer of responsibilities and time commitments.
One of the things that can help, particularly in an NHS Continuing Care funding application and appeal, is to keep a journal or diary. When the NHS makes decisions you disagree with, and you decide to challenge those decisions or launch a Continuing Care appeal, the details you record in your journal now will save you a lot of time later on.
The more information you jot down each time you speak to or receive communications from people in the health or social care authorities, or from the care home or care agency, the quicker you’ll be able to put a response together when you need to.
If you are your relative’s formal representative, for example you hold a power of attorney, be sure to ask for copies of assessment notes plus the rationale for any funding decisions already made.
Keep general notes about:
- your relative’s specific diagnoses and their general progression over time
- dates and details of any previous assessments for NHS Continuing Healthcare – when they took place, who was present, any available ‘scores’ and what the outcome was
- any NHS or local authority maladministration that you’re aware of – and/or things that just don’t seem to have been done right, including things that NHS or local authority staff may have said (or not said) to you.
- delays and obstruction in the assessment process
- misstatements of fact in the assessment notes
- any intimidation or inappropriate pressure put on you to give up your battle for funding
- dates and times of any relevant medical or healthcare appointments and other meetings to do with your relative’s health needs, health decline, care provision or funding
- any relevant conversations with staff and/or therapists from different bodies/departments (NHS, local authority or private), including physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, nutrition, etc. – and what was discussed
- other appointments, conversations and phone calls
- notes on anything that doesn’t seem right to you about a lack of statutory funding and/or care provision
- any other information or notes from relevant clinicians, doctors, nurses or therapists that you think will strengthen your case.
If you’re asking for daily care notes, care records or charts, or other information you need for a care funding application or appeal, and you’re told the information is not available, ask why this is not available and be sure to note down what you were asking for, who you spoke to, when you spoke to them and the reason you’re given for the information being ‘unavailable’.
Be sure to also keep copies of any hospital/GP/care home correspondence and/or letters or health reports from relevant consultants, doctors, clinicians or therapists.
When you’re going through a funding battle, especially an NHS Continuing Healthcare application and appeal, all these notes and details will be invaluable, especially if you keep them up to date and record them at the time things happen.
If you’re not sure what should – and shouldn’t – happen in a Continuing Healthcare funding assessment, you may find our step-by-step e-book helpful: How To Get The NHS To Pay For Care.
How has keeping a diary helped you in a battle for funding?