News Articles

Beware misleading guarantees in CHC casework

Posted on: July 24th, 2020 by JS

Callers to our helpline this week have told us that a Continuing Healthcare firm is claiming guaranteed success in CHC appeal casework. This is shamefully misleading and we urge people to think very carefully before proceeding with any firm that makes such claims, while asking for fees upfront. We understand some people will be very tempted by such guarantees because of the additional hardship caused by delays to CHC appeals during the COVID-19 emergency. However, we’ve been working in this area for nearly two decades, and can say with confidence that it is never possible to …read more

Coronavirus, NHS Continuing Healthcare, and Beacon

Posted on: March 18th, 2020 by JS

The impact of coronavirus on NHS Continuing Healthcare During this worrying and unprecedented time, all of us at Beacon are doing our utmost to carry on supporting, informing and advising our callers and clients as they go through the Continuing Healthcare system. The nature of COVID-19 (coronavirus) makes it particularly concerning for people already in poor health, and their families, who we work with everyday. The Coronavirus Act 2020 – emergency legislation that included measures to protect and support the NHS frontline – enacted significant changes to the way that new or enhanced care packages are …read more

Six-month deadline reinstated for appeals, closing an unfair loophole

Posted on: February 7th, 2020 by JS

It has been confirmed that people in England are entitled to six months to decide to appeal an eligibility decision for NHS Continuing Healthcare. The Department of Health and Social Care have today confirmed that this is the national guidance that every Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) should adhere to. The six-month timescale has been reinstated for the first stage of the appeal process (Local Resolution) and remains the case for the second stage (Independent Review). Department responds to challenge The update comes just a few months after the worrying news that CCGs were being allowed to …read more

Beacon calls on CCGs to be fair when setting Local Resolution deadlines under new rules

Posted on: October 18th, 2019 by JS

It has been confirmed that Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) are now able to set the time that individuals have to challenge an eligibility decision for NHS Continuing Healthcare. In the past, people were allowed six months to request Local Resolution – the first stage of the appeal process – according to nationally-set rules. Now, local decision-makers can choose and fix that period in their area – the stipulation being that it must be ‘fair’ and published. You’ll be notified of your CCG’s deadline in their decision letter to you. Clarity but concern The issue of appeal …read more

Share your views to help improve public information about NHS Continuing Healthcare

Posted on: September 5th, 2018 by JS

Evolving Communities CIC in collaboration with Beacon have an exciting opportunity for individuals to improve the quality and accessibility of NHS Continuing Healthcare (CHC) information. We want to hear from you if you are an individual or their representative and have gone through the CHC assessment process (Checklist and/or full assessment). We’re interested in how you accessed information about CHC throughout the entire process. This work is being commissioned by NHS England (NHSE) and will help them develop a national CHC information resource. The project has two stages, an online survey and a series of focus …read more

BBC Radio 4 Money Box Live on NHS Continuing Healthcare, with Beacon

Posted on: June 13th, 2018 by JS

In May, Beacon’s Dan Harbour was invited to appear on Radio 4’s personal finance phone-in, Money Box Live. Dan was answering listeners’ questions in an episode dedicated to NHS Continuing Healthcare. You can listen to the 30 minute programme via the BBC website, at: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b0b39v3z About us Beacon CHC is a leading UK-wide social enterprise with profits donated to charity to fund vital older peoples’ services. Our specialist caseworkers provide a comprehensive and ethical advocacy and support service for individuals trying to navigate the maze of NHS CHC funding. We also run an independent helpline – funded by the NHS – …read more

Power of Attorney – thousands could be eligible for refund

Posted on: April 27th, 2018 by JS

If you registered a Power of Attorney between 1st April 2013 and 31st March 2017 you may have been asked by the Office of the Public Guardian (OPG) to pay too much as an administration fee and be due a partial refund. The miscalculation of fees happened because the OPG became more efficient at processing the registrations but didn’t reduce the fee at the time – fees were only lowered from 1st April 2017. To check if you are due a refund take a look here: www.gov.uk/power-of-attorney-refund Or ring the Office of the Public Guardian on 0300 456 0300 …read more

Funded nursing care guidelines for care homes don’t go far enough – our response to ombudsman’s report

Posted on: April 27th, 2018 by JS

NHS-funded Nursing Care (FNC) is the Department of Health’s contribution towards care homes’ costs for people who are in receipt of nursing care from a registered nurse. In 2016 we reported that the standard FNC rate was rising to £156.25 per week (from £112). We hoped that care homes would reflect this rate rise in their fees, passing on a welcome reduction in nursing costs to residents who may otherwise be funding some of the costs of this from their own pocket. However, we’ve been aware that this is frequently not the case, with murky explanations …read more

Government response to recommendations for CHC improvement are ‘not heart-warming’, says Beacon

Posted on: April 27th, 2018 by JS

In January, following an inquiry to which we were invited to give expert evidence, the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) published their frank assessment of the state of the Continuing Healthcare (CHC) system. In it they highlighted five areas where the system is falling short: delays in assessments awareness of the funding the postcode lottery of eligibility inconsistent compliance to the national guidelines unclear savings targets Alongside each area, the PAC made recommendations for improvement – asking the Department of Health and NHS England to report back by April 2018 in most cases. Response from the Government The …read more

The National Framework for NHS Continuing Healthcare has been updated – our response

Posted on: March 6th, 2018 by JS

On Friday 2 March the Department of Health and Social Care published a revised National Framework for Continuing Healthcare (CHC) and NHS-funded Nursing Care. Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) have until October 2018 to adopt the new rules. Dan Harbour, Managing Director of Beacon, and the national Information and Advice Service for NHS CHC, said: “CHC packages can make a life-or-death difference to people with serious, often long term, health problems. Poor adoption of best practice and patchy availability of funding has become endemic, and the Framework update is a golden opportunity for improvement. “We’re pleased to see …read more