Points of Law: What to do if your relative is in care

If you have a relative who is going into care Amy may have some useful information for you
If you have a relative who is going into care Amy may have some useful information for you

Lawyer Amy O’Sullivan from Seatons Solicitors in Corby writes for the Telegraph.

Previously I have discussed NHS Continuing Healthcare and this article determines what you should you do if your relative is in care to begin the process.

The first thing to do is check whether an assessment for NHS Continuing Healthcare has already been carried out.

When your relative enters care, it is likely that several assessments have been completed.

But the NHS Continuing Healthcare assessment determines whether or not your relative has a health need and if so, the NHS should fund the entire care fees including accommodation.

You should approach the district nurse in the care home to find out who the relevant person is to complete the assessment.

There are strict guidelines the NHS should adhere to, including timeframes, once you have requested the assessment.

As your relative’s representative you have the right to be present and to provide input to the assessment, which is crucial as many professionals can overlook some of the care needs.

The first part of the process is an assessment known as the NHS Checklist.

This assessment has a low threshold and, if successful, the process moves forward to the NHS Decision Support Tool assessment.

Both of the assessments look at 12 different domains of care including behaviour, mobility, continence and so on.

They are ‘scored’ depending on the severity of the need.

If the NHS Checklist is passed, the NHS Decision Support Tool is far more detailed but again covers the 12 domains.

If your relative scores high enough on the domains, the primary health needs test is applied which looks at the unpredictability, complexity and intensity of the care needs as a whole.

The file is then placed in front of a multi-disciplinary panel to make a recommendation as to eligibility for NHS Continuing Healthcare.

The professional assessing your relative throughout should be actively involved in your relative’s care to provide a fair and thorough assessment.

Before completion of the second assessment, the Decision Support Tool, the NHS should obtain all of the relevant health and social care records, which should be taken into account and recorded within the assessment.

These assessments can be carried out even if you are unsure whether your relative will be eligible for NHS Continuing Healthcare.

If you require any assistance whatsoever, please do not hesitate to get in touch.