HL Deb 17 February 2003 vol 644 c157WA
Lord Ashley of Stoke

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Whether they will ensure that payments of nursing care money to patients with dementia are made directly to them and their carers rather than to the nursing home; and [HL1546]

What steps they are taking to prevent nursing home owners from failing to pass on nursing care payments to residents; and [HL1547]

What results have emerged from the National Care Standards Commission's regulations that nursing care homes are obliged to provide a breakdown of fees. [HL1548]

Lord Hunt of Kings Heath

Regardless of the condition someone has, the National Health Service makes payments to care homes as a contribution for the registered nursing care that they provide to eligible residents. The NHS cither provides itself or pays others to provide them on its behalf. Many providers have adjusted the fee payable by the resident to take account of the additional state funding. A model contract, issued by the Department of Health in March 2002, requires that these be accounted for separately.

Following a separate consultation in June 2002 on amending the Care Homes Regulations, a revised draft was included as part of a wider consultation on NHS funded nursing care on 20 December 2002, the closing date for which was 31 January. The comments on this are being considered at the moment.

The findings of the National Care Standards Commission's monitoring of National Minimum Standard 2 since April 2002, which requires care homes to provide service users with a contract and statement of terms and conditions, will be available at the end of this financial year. The commission will, of course, be responsible for monitoring service providers' compliance with any amendments to the Care Home Regulations.

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