Elderly and vulnerable people recently discharged from hospital across Kent urged not miss out on new Government funding

September 22, 2020

The Government reintroduced NHS continuing healthcare (NHSCHC) in England from 1st September 2020, providing access to £588 million in funding to help people who require domiciliary care or care home support after being discharged from hospital.

Kent law firm Furley Page advises elderly and vulnerable clients and their families on a wide range of legal matters, including accessing NHSCHC.

Lucie Glover, a Chartered Legal Executive with the firm, said: “We are delighted that the Government has released additional funding to the NHS to help provide crucial support for people, particularly the elderly and vulnerable, following their discharge from hospital.

“Hospital discharges continue to be arranged as soon as it is clinically appropriate to do so. Where a patient has a new care need upon discharge, they may now be entitled to access funding for a period of up to six weeks to allow post-discharge recovery and to enable the necessary assessments to be undertaken by the NHS or the local authority.”

During the pandemic the Government set up emergency COVID-19 funding to allow hospital beds to be vacated as quickly as possible, whilst ensuring that everyone had the necessary care and support in place following discharge.

Where a new or enhanced care package was required for hospital discharges which took place between 19th March and 31st August 2020, this should have been paid for using the emergency COVID-19 funding. This funding should remain in place until the necessary assessments have taken place.

Any funds paid towards care fees whilst waiting for an NHS continuing healthcare assessment, whether personally or by the local authority, should be refunded in line with the National Framework, if eligibility to NHS continuing healthcare is proved following assessment.

Lucie continued: “Gaining NHS continuing healthcare eligibility can be difficult as there is very strict criteria for making a claim. Our team of specialist lawyers can help individuals who need to make an appeal against an NHS continuing healthcare (CHC) funding decision or if they need to claim back care fees that they should not have been paid.”

There is a waiting list of approximately 25,000 people to be assessed and the Government has confirmed that extra staff could be put in place to assist with the backlog, if required. In order to deal with the backlog, assessments may be carried out in person or remotely, for example by video conferencing, alongside the required care and medical records.”

Furley Page’s specialist Vulnerable Client team can provide advice for those navigating a way through the NHS continuing healthcare process.

For more information contact Lucie Glover on email leg@furleypage.co.uk or call 01227 763939.