Care Home Fees and Dementia
Not all elderly care homes are equipped to provide specialist care for Dementia and all its various guises. Patients diagnosed with Dementia need specialist nursing care and these specialist homes, often called EMI Homes (Elderly Mentally Infirm), will have Patient care under the professional support of a Registered Mental Nurse.
A study carried out by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation in 2008 showed that Dementia patients, on average, needed virtually 20% more time with a Carer than other elderly care home residents. It stands to reason, therefore, that an EMI bed in a care home is going to cost more than a non-EMI bed in the same home.
In my blog entitled Average Care Home Fees, I show the current average care home fees in the UK and it is reasonable to add 5 – 10% to those care home fees for an EMI bed. This takes into account the additional, qualified staff needed in the home and the extra time spent with each patient.
Conveniently, the NHS does not consider Dementia to be a “Primary Health Need”, so they will not pay for Dementia care alone. Of course, if the patient has other serious medical conditions, then the combination, including the Dementia, may trigger NHS Continuing Care. In all other cases, the usual means-testing rules apply.
A Dementia patient requiring only Social Care in a Care Home will either pay for that care themselves or, if they have insufficient income/capital, qualify for help from the Local Authority. A Dementia patient requiring some Nursing Care in a Nursing Home will qualify for NHS-Funded Care, with the standard modest contribution to those costs, but otherwise the patient will be self or Local Authority-funded.
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