​NHS Continuing Healthcare

What is NHS Continuing Healthcare?

NHS Continuing Healthcare is the name given to the funding for a package of care provided outside hospital, arranged and funded solely by the NHS, to meet your on-going healthcare needs. This is often called 'Fully Funded NHS care'.

What is NHS Funded Nursing Care?

This is the name given to a contribution from the NHS to meeting the nursing element of your care if your needs are such that they have to be met in a nursing home, but to not trigger full NHS funding.​

​How is eligibility for NHS Continuing Healthcare or Funded Nursing Care decided?

Your needs are assessed by a team of health and social care professionals (a "multi-disciplinary team"). You, and where appropriate your family, are involved in the assessment process. The assessment may take place in your own home or in hospital.

The assessment team uses a Framework for NHS Continuing Healthcare which is defined by NHS England. To be eligible for NHS Continuing Healthcare, you must be assessed as having a "primary health need" in line with the domains included in the NHS Framework. It does not relate to any particular diagnosis or condition. If your needs change then your eligibility for NHS Continuing Healthcare may change.

After your assessment

Your assessment will be presented to the Lewisham Vulnerable Adult panel for consideration and ratification. You will be notified in writing of the outcome of the panel. If you are not eligible NHS Continuing Healthcare, the reasons will be explained in the letter. A copy of the assessment will be attached to that letter. The letter will also tell you how to appeal if you feel the decision is wrong. The professional who referred you for the assessment will also be informed of the outcome of the panel.

​Care and support planning

If you are eligible for fully funded NHS Continuing Healthcare, the next stage is to arrange a care and support package which meets your assessed needs.

Depending on your situation, different options could be suitable. Lewisham's continuing healthcare team will work with you to discuss your needs and consider your views about what support might best meet those needs. Other factors such as the cost and value for money of different options will also be taken into account.

If you are eligible for NHS Funded Nursing Care, the Brokerage Team will work with you and your family and the Continuing Healthcare Team to find a nursing home that can meet your needs.


If you are eligible for NHS Continuing Healthcare, or NHS Funded Nursing Care, your needs and support package will be reviewed within three months and thereafter at least once a year. This review will consider whether your existing care and support package meets your assessed needs. If your needs have changed, the review will also consider: whether you are still eligible for fully funded NHS Continuing Healthcare; or whether your needs are now higher than those usually considered eligible for NHS Funded Nursing Care and that you should be reassessed for fully funded NHS care.

​Personal health budgets

If you are eligible for fully funded NHS Continuing Healthcare, you will automatically be offered a personal health budget. This will give you more control over how to spend the money available to best meet your needs and achieve your health goals. If you are eligible for a personal health budget and choose this option, you will be helped to develop your healthcare support plan to be paid for by the budget allocated to you. This will allow you to control the nature and the timing of your care, and when you want it to start while also allowing the CCG to be assured that your needs are being met competently and safely. For more information about continuing healthcare in Lewisham click here

NHS Continuing Healthcare Advocacy Service

Beacon is funded by NHS England and provides expert and independent NHS Continuing Healthcare advice.  This service allows members of the public to access free and comprehensive information and advice to help them to understand the NHS Continuing Healthcare eligibility criteria and to navigate the assessment and review processes. Information and advice is accessible in the form of free and comprehensive written guidance, and individuals are also able to access up to 90 minutes of free advice with a trained NHS Continuing Healthcare adviser. You can download the information brochure here and the leaflet here.  For further information is available at : www.beaconchc.co.uk

Further information and links:

To find out more about NHS Continuing Healthcare visit the NHS Choices website or contact the Continuing Healthcare Team email: LEWCCG.continuingcare@nhs.net

Also, please visit the Department of Health website for detailed information on the National Framework for NHS Continuing Healthcare and NHS Funded Nursing care.

There are also a number of 'You Tube' films relating to Continuing Health Care which you might also find useful:

​NHS England Continuing Healthcare (CHC) Film.

NHS Continuing Healthcare: what to expect from an Independent Review Panel.