Continuing healthcare

NHS continuing healthcare is free care outside of hospital that is arranged and funded by the NHS. It is only available for people who need ongoing healthcare and meet the eligibility criteria described below. NHS continuing healthcare is sometimes called fully funded NHS care.

Where is care provided?

NHS continuing healthcare can be provided in any setting, including a care home, hospice or the home of the person you look after. If someone in a care home gets NHS continuing healthcare, it will cover their care home fees, including the cost of accommodation, personal care and healthcare costs.

If NHS continuing healthcare is provided in the home of the person you look after, it will cover personal care and healthcare costs. It may also include support for carers – see NHS Continuing healthcare FAQs on the NHS choices website for more details. 


To be eligible for NHS continuing healthcare, the person you look after must be assessed as having a "primary health need" and have a complex medical condition and substantial and ongoing care needs.

Not everyone with a disability or long-term condition will be eligible. Click here to find out more about the assessment process.

Guidance says that the assessment for NHS continuing healthcare should be "person centred". This means that the person being assessed should be fully involved in the assessment process. They should be kept informed, and have their views about their own needs and support taken into account. As a carer, you should also be consulted where appropriate. It’s a good idea to make it clear that you would like to participate fully in the assessment process.

A decision about eligibility should usually be made within 28 days of an assessment being carried out.

Changes to how CHC funds are allocated in Castle Point and Rochford from 1 April 2016

Image of CHC bookletWe needed to look at how funds are allocated for CHC in the Castle Point and Rochford area to ensure that our CHC system is fair for all and based upon the specific needs of each individual. We're not looking to change who is eligible for CHC, we're looking at calculating costs based on patients individual needs and exploring options rather than relying on pre-packaged care.

These changes will not affect those patients who are currently in receipt of a CHC package of care, but they will apply to all those people who are found to be eligible for CHC from 1 April 2016.

For more information, download our booklet:
CHC How things are changing in CP&R


More information

For more information about NHS continuing healthcare, visit the NHS Choices website.

Contact the team

01268 464550 

Related documents: pdf


CHC service operational policy

(840 KB)