Personal Health Budgets and Personal Budgets
For information about social care Personal Budgets please scroll down.
Personal Health Budgets
Personal health budgets were introduced in 2009, with 76 Primary Care Trusts throughout England undertaking pilots for three years, to establish which areas of healthcare would benefit from people being able to access and use personal health budgets.
Each Primary Care Trust chose an area of healthcare to pilot personal health budgets with, including but not limited to:
- NHS funded Continuing Healthcare
- Mental Health services
- Long term conditions, such as Diabetes and MS
- Learning Disabilities
- Maternity Services
- End of life care
A new way of working in the NHS
Personal health budgets give you the opportunity to have greater choice and control over the care and support that you need.
It is about sharing power and responsibility and ultimately involves you more in the decision-making process.
You are the expert in how your health condition or impairment affects you and the impact this has on your life.
Clinicians, such as doctors, nurses or therapists undertake years of training and work experience to develop their medical knowledge and understanding of health conditions and impairments.
Sharing your own experience of living with a health condition or impairment and the impact it has on you with a clinician who has medical knowledge about your health condition or impairment is the best way to develop support that works for you.
Personal health budgets enable you to explain what care or support you feel would be best for you and involves you in the decision making process.
The Principles of Personal Health Budgets
In 2009, the Department of Health issued the following principles that must underlie personal health budgets:
- Uphold the values of the NHS
- Be free at the point of delivery and not depend on ability to pay
- Support safeguarding and quality
- Be voluntary
- Decisions should be made as close to the person as possible
- Support partnership working
The Evaluation of Personal Health Budgets
You can find out which geographical areas were involved in the pilots and the areas of healthcare they piloted personal health budgets with here
The pilots finished on 30th October 2012 and the National Personal Health Budget Evaluation was published on 30th November 2012. You can read the full evaluation report here
The future for Personal Health Budgets
From 1st October 2014, those that are eligible for or receiving NHS Continuing Healthcare will have the right to have a personal health budget.
From April 2015, Clinical Commissioning Groups will also be able to offer a personal health budget to people with a long-term condition who may benefit from the additional flexibility and control, though the details of this have not been confirmed yet.
Is a personal health budget right for you?
You can read more about personal health budgets in our Personal Health Budgets Frequently Asked Questions section.
You can also contact us if you would like to get in touch with us.
Personal Budgets and Direct Payments have been available to people who are eligible for social care support since the Community Care (Direct Payments) Act 1996 was introduced and came into force in April 1997.
A Direct Payment is a way of receiving your Personal Budget. Your local council will make cash payments to you, to enable you to pay for your own care and support.
You may be eligible for a personal budget if you are:
- A disabled person aged 16 or over (with short or long-term needs)
- A Parent of a disabled child (available for children’s services)
- A carer aged 16 or over (including people with parental responsibility for a disabled child)
- An Elderly person who need community care services
- Live in England, Scotland and Wales. If you live in Scotland or Wales, contact your council directly
To qualify for a Personal Budget you need to have a Community Care Assessment with your local council and meet the criteria.
There is a National criteria that councils use to assess someone’s eligibility for support or services called ‘Fair Access to Care Services’ or ‘FACS’ for short.
There are four levels of eligibility, known as Critical, Substantial, Moderate and Low.
Some Councils only provide services to those who meet the eligibility levels of ‘Critical’ or ‘Substantial’, however they may be able to provide you with advice and guidance of where you can access support from.
Social care services are also means-tested, which means that they can charge for services provided depending on the level of income you have.
For more information about personal budgets please visit our Personal Budgets Frequently Asked Questions