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Care advice service

Care Advice Service

Getting the care you deserve

The right care can be life-changing for spinal cord injured people. We want to make sure you get that if you need care to support your needs.

Our care advice service can help you understand and make the most of the two types of statutory care you may be eligible for: NHS continuing healthcare (NHS CHC) and social care from the local authority.

NHS continuing healthcare

NHS CHC is free and for people who are considered to have a primary health need. The problem is that there is no clear legal definition for this type of need, so it can be difficult to know whether you’ll be eligible.

There is, however, case law that can act as an example in future applications and appeals. The Court of Appeal ruled in 1999 that Pamela Coughlan, paralysed below the neck with a C5/6 complete spinal cord injury, “needed services of a wholly different category” to those provided by local authorities. The Coughlan judgment remains the leading legal case on NHS CHC eligibility, but it’s important to be aware that it doesn’t guarantee eligibility for all SCI people with the same level of injury. Everyone who applies is assessed for eligibility.

Our care advice service helps our members prepare for assessments or reviews of current NHS CHC funding. We can help with challenging any decisions with which you’re unhappy too.

Contact the service by email or by calling our support line on 0800 980 0501.

You can also access our online NHS CHC toolkit for more information here.

Social care

This type of care is means tested, and eligibility is assessed by the council. How you manage daily routines, keep safe at home, maintain relationships and access your community will be considered.

Our care advice service can help you understand social care and provide you with information and support for needs assessments, financial assessments, care planning or challenging decisions.

Contact the service by email or through our support line by calling 0800 980 0501.

Preparing for a care assessment

Solid preparation is vital ahead of care assessments and reviews to give you the best possible chance of having all your needs recognised and met.

You may need to spell out all sorts of details about your daily care that you no longer think about, so it can help to prepare notes or a detailed care diary to ensure you make the assessors aware of the support you need.

If you need help with this, our care advice service is here for you. Get in touch by email or by calling our support line on 0800 980 0501.