Continuing healthcare is a free healthcare management service by the National Health Service and rendered to all persons who have been proven to require major, substantial, and uninterrupted health services by a healthcare professional. Contrary to rumours, you absolutely do not have to be in a senior centre or nursing home to qualify for continuing healthcare. Generally, eligibility is measured by specific health needs and not things like age or location. The following are a few important things everyone needs to know about continuing healthcare.
How to Determine Eligibility
Assessment for eligibility for continuing healthcare under the NHS is pretty strict. Because there probably are no exact or definite rules regarding eligibility, an assessment is pretty much the only way for that to be ascertained. Health issues that may require continuing healthcare are varied. They may include problems with movement and flexibility, problems that affect social and perceptive functions, problems that continuously regress general health and wellbeing, and ailments that are largely considered incurable or life threatening.
However, the above conditions are not exactly set in stone and also don’t ensure automatic eligibility for continuing healthcare.
Application and Assessment Process
Application for continuing healthcare is usually done through a doctor or a health social worker. After the application process has been concluded, the assessment process would begin. The assessment usually comprises a few things and is done by a doctor, nurse, or other trained healthcare professionals. A continuing healthcare checklist would be used to determine your assessment. The checklist usually includes problems surrounding communication, psychology, nutrition, mobility, breathing, continence, and even cognitive prowess.
There is, however, the possibility that this initial process could be bypassed if the person has significant health issues that are deteriorating quickly and the said person might not last through the entire process.
After this initial process is completed, a second screening, which is a lot more in-depth, will be carried out. It will be most of the same things as itemised above but with a lot more attention to details. At this part, each healthcare need that you have will be rated according to urgency or severity.
Costs Covered by the NHS
The continuing healthcare service covers most of the cost of healthcare and could cover a bit more than just professional medical attention. In some cases, when there’s a need for the individual to be placed in a hospice or a nursing home, the cost of that could also be covered. There could also be support for home professionals for patients who are not in a hospice and require attention in the comfort of their own homes. However, this differs by location. For specifics about what costs may or may not be covered, please contact your local Health Board.
Alternatives to Continuing Healthcare
There are many cases where applications are rejected after an assessment has been carried out and the individual has “failed” it. In such a case, you may ask for a review especially if your health has deteriorated. If that also doesn’t pull through, there are other services including rehabilitation and palliative care that can benefit such a person.
People who might need continuing healthcare from the NHS are always encouraged to apply regardless of the application and assessment process. So, if you do need the service or you know someone who does, contact a doctor or social worker and make an application.