Continuing Healthcare

Continuing Care or as it was previously known, Continuing Health Care has always been the responsibility of the NHS but the problem arises if you think either you or a loved one is eligible for fully funded care and the grinding beaurocracy of the health Service doesn't. You then have a bit of a battle on your hands because the NHS over the years has adopted a policy of assessing your 'Eligibility Criteria' which has become a subjective numbers game with the NHS in charge of the rulebook. It is by no means a level playing field but you need to be very well versed in the procedures to be successful. You will appreciate that The NHS employs a huge army of scribes and they will throw as much money as needed at it to try to win. A summary of the historical aspects of Continuing Care funding and up to the present day can be found HERE.

The Reality

This website deals with dementia in later life and specifically dementia of the Alzheimer's type. Therefore we are dealing with many frail and vulnerable citizens, many for the first time in their lives being seriously in need of NHS care and yet they are denied it thanks to government policy over the years shunting their care responsibility onto Social Services. Up until 2007 healthcare funding eligibility depended on whatever the local health authority liked to make it since none of them had a Coughlan compliant rulebook. Since 2007 there is the national Framework which had attempted a semi-quantitative assessment procedure but again is pretty vague as to where the bar is, but it's certainly quite high. Even so, from the Table below, you can see that the eligibility rated aren't equal over the country, depending on where you live. The performance of Suffolk PCT in the East of England SHA has been separated out, illustrating that in 2012 we really didn't stand much chance.
People receiving NHS CHC expressed as No. per 50K persons in relevant SHA area
SHA 2009/10 2010/11 2011/12
North East SHA 50.7 63.7 76.7
North West SHA 48.0 47.2 48.7
Yorkshire and Humber SHA 55.4 63.9 67.2
East Midlands SHA 52.6 52.5 56.5
West Midlands SHA 54.2 54.6 54.4
East of England SHA 30.2 41.1 47.5
London SHA 44.6 47.1 53.0
South East Coast SHA 36.0 46.1 47.2
South Central SHA 47.0 41.0 36.7
South West SHA 59.4 59.7 58.6
- - - -
Suffolk PCT 35.2 59.0 34.2
So basically, we have situation which has built up over the years, to save money the NHS has dumped all its continuing care beds in favour of government targets. Dementia sufferers are reliant on the community for support together with care homes and nursing homes taking on the role that once was NHS. The government is encouraging 'dementia friends' to take on the volunteering challenges but the majority of sufferers will pay for home care visits and residential otherwords privatisation of the elderly. A summary of the reality of continuing healthcare funding can be found HERE
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