By Rosalind Hughes, founder, Just Caring Legal
Is someone you know at risk of losing their care home place due to NHS Continuing Healthcare shortfalls? If so, you are not alone. Catastrophic failures in the administration of this vital NHS care funding are leading to a plethora of safeguarding concerns within care settings. Some of our most vulnerable citizens are actually at risk of losing the roof over their heads.
Here at Just Caring Legal we are becoming aware of an increasing number of serious NHS Continuing Healthcare shortfalls. This is where local Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) fail to pay adequate funds to cover the full costs of providing care.
Under the system of NHS Continuing Healthcare, the CCG is under a duty to meet the cost of all assessed care needs in full. This is the case regardless of any savings or assets the person may have.
The care needs of people living with progressive conditions such as MS and dementia tend to become increasingly labour intensive. Care homes may become unable – or unwilling – to meet more intense one-to-one care needs for the amount they initially agreed with the CCG. However, we know that in some cases CCGs are refusing to pay the going rate for the extra care. In the worst instances, stalemate can result in vulnerable residents being turfed out of the only home they have known for years. Distraught families sometimes don’t realise until their relative receives a notice to quit.
CCGs may be in breach not just of NHS Continuing Healthcare rules – but also their duty of care
CCGs are under a duty to engage with care providers over the management of changing care needs. Failure to update and fund care plans at the going rate is in clear breach of the rules governing NHS Continuing Healthcare. It also represents a safeguarding issue of the very highest order. That any vulnerable individual should be under threat of losing the roof over their head, never mind the day-to-day care they desperately need, is unconscionable.
It places vulnerable people at risk of emotional, psychological, not to mention physical harm. Failing to fund intensifying care needs not only puts them in grave danger. It also puts our NHS – and our country – to shame.
Every CCG is under a legal duty to review care needs and ensure funding covers all essential care
Unfortunately, I am aware that stories like this are happening up and down the country. Every CCG is under a legal duty to assess and review care needs as necessary. And it must ensure that NHS Continuing Healthcare funding covers all costs in full so that recipients remain safe and adequately cared for. It is actually illegal for care homes to ask for NHS Continuing Healthcare “top-ups“. This is why NHS Continuing Healthcare shortfalls can be nothing short of catastrophic.
Is someone you know facing similar NHS Continuing Healthcare shortfalls?
Is your family member’s health, wellbeing and sense of security at risk due to a shortfall in NHS Continuing Healthcare funding? Perhaps their care facility threatening to serve notice to quit? Or are they asking for NHS CHC “top ups”? If so, then call us today for a free initial discussion of your case. We are specialists in liaising with CCGs and care homes over NHS Continuing Healthcare and also in dealing with potential safeguarding issues. We can advise you in honest, straightforward terms about whether you have a case. And if you require, we can cut through the bureaucratic red tape and act on your behalf.
Don’t let your loved one become another statistic due to NHS Continuing Healthcare shortfalls. Take steps to safeguard their future – today.