When you look for the best care homes in Wales, fees and funding will almost always be key considerations. This guide explains what you should expect when you start to research the costs of care homes in Wales.
The information in this guide applies whether you are seeking a care home in northern Wales, or a care home in southern Wales.
Fees and funding for care homes in Wales
Care home fees in Wales include the cost of accommodation, as well as personal care in a residential care home, or nursing care in a nursing care home. Here’s what each fee covers:
- accommodation (sometimes called the hotel cost, this can apply to a residential care home or a nursing care home)
- personal care in a residential care home (24/7 support is provided by qualified care assistants who support you in washing, dressing, dining and socialising)
- nursing care in a nursing care home (24/7 support in the same key areas is overseen by registered nurses, and is designed for people with specific medical requirements)
Generally speaking, if you have savings or assets worth £40,000 or more, you’ll be expected to self-fund the full amount of your residential care home costs in Wales. This threshold is in place from the 9th of April 2018, and is subject to review. Your income and capital will both be subject to a means test. (See note 1.)
However, you may qualify for care home funding in Wales, even if your capital value exceeds the threshold. NHS continuing healthcare, also known as fully funded care, can be provided free of charge in a care home. People who are eligible for NHS continuing healthcare will be assessed as having “complex, intense or unpredictable health needs in a number of areas”, according to Age UK. In this case, if you are assessed as needing health-based care, you would be entitled to free healthcare in a care home setting. Your social care would be means-tested. (See note 1.)
Accessing free nursing care in Wales
If you move into a nursing home, the NHS will cover the cost of care provided by a registered nurse. Paid weekly, this NHS-funded nursing contribution is offered to residents of nursing care homes in Wales. (See note 1.)
Finding a care home in Wales: the first step
If you live in Wales and are researching care homes, make sure that you first book a care needs assessment. Provided free of charge by your local authority, this assessment will help identify whether your care needs should best be supported in a care home. The care needs assessment will also help identify whether your needs require the support of specialist nurses in a nursing care home, or if your needs can be managed in a residential care home without dedicated nursing support.
Are nursing homes in Wales free?
If you move into a nursing home, the NHS will cover the cost of care provided by a registered nurse. Paid weekly, this NHS-funded nursing contribution is offered to all residents of nursing care homes in Wales.
Do you have to sell your house to pay care home fees in Wales?
Depending on your financial position you may need to sell your home to pay care home fees. However, there are circumstances where your house would not be included in the financial assessment, so it is recommended to always seek financial advice.
What is the savings threshold for care home fees in Wales?
As of April 2018, if you have assets worth £40,000 or more you will be expected to self-fund the full amount of your residential care home costs. However, it is recommended to seek financial advice as additional funding may be available.
- For more information on funding care home costs in Wales, visit: https://www.ageuk.org.uk/global/Age-Cymru/Factsheets%20and%20information%20guides/FS10w.pdf?epslanguage=en-GB-CY?dtrk=true
Last updated 20 June 2018