NHS continuing healthcare is the name given to care and support which is arranged and paid for by the NHS. It's also known as CHC funding and it's for people who have a primary health need that may have arisen as a result of a disability, accident, or illness. 

It may include funding for social care costs which would normally be paid for by an individual or the council. You can receive NHS continuing healthcare if you are living in your own home or in a care home. 

NHS continuing healthcare is not means tested, unlike support provided by a local authority, for which a financial charge may be made depending on your income and/or savings. 

If you are eligible for NHS continuing healthcare and you live in your own home, you will be offered your funding via a personal health budget. This means that the NHS will pay for the care and support that you are assessed as needing and will arrange for a case co-ordinator to oversee your care.

A personal health budget is similar to a direct payment where you are given an allowance to pay for the service you need. It offers more choice and control on how care is arranged to best meet your assessed needs.  It can help pay for care needs such as help with bathing and dressing, food preparation and shopping if these are part of your care plan. 

If you live in a care home, NHS continuing healthcare can pay for your care home fees, including board and accommodation. 

NHS continuing healthcare is provided via the relevant Integrated Care Board

View the NHS continuing healthcare - Social care and support guide - NHS (www.nhs.uk) 


NHS continuing healthcare is available to people over 18 years old who have been assessed as having a primary health need that may have arisen as the result of a disability, accident, or illness. 

Someone is eligible for NHS continuing healthcare if the main aspects or majority part of the care they require is focused on addressing and/or preventing health needs. It is not about the reason why an individual requires care or support, nor is it based on their diagnosis; it is about the level and type of their overall actual day-to-day care that needs to be taken in their totality. 

If you're eligible for NHS continuing healthcare, your care will be funded by the NHS. The care provided will be reviewed regularly and if your care needs change, the funding arrangements may also change. 

The easiest way to know if you are eligible for NHS continuing healthcare is to ask your GP, community nurse, other health professionals, or social care worker to consider you for it.

If you are not eligible for NHS continuing healthcare 

If you live in your own home and are not eligible for CHC, the council may be responsible for assessing your care needs under the Care Act 2014. However, NHS healthcare services can still be accessed via your GP or community nursing services regardless of this. 

NHS funded nursing care

If you are not eligible for NHS continuing healthcare and live in a care home with nursing you may be eligible for NHS funded nursing care

NHS funded nursing care is the funding provided by the NHS to care homes providing nursing. The funding supports the provision of care from a registered nurse for those who are eligible. 

NHS funded nursing care is not means tested, which means a financial assessment would not be required based on your income and/or savings.

NHS funded nursing care is paid directly to the care home where the person is living and receiving nursing care. It covers the cost of the registered nurse. 

You may be eligible for NHS funded nursing care if: 

  • you live in a nursing home 
  • you're not eligible for NHS Continuing Healthcare but have been assessed as needing care from a registered nurse 

Most people don't need a separate assessment for NHS funded nursing care. In Dorset, the nursing home will normally advise the relevant Integrated Care Board that you need to be considered for NHS funded nursing care. However, if you do think you need an assessment or you haven't already had one, the relevant integrated care board can arrange an assessment for you. If your care home is in Dorset, it will normally be NHS Dorset who will assess you for NHS funded nursing care. Find your relevant integrated care board