A report by the Public Accounts Committee says that although NHS Continuing Healthcare (CHC) funding is aimed at providing help to people with severe healthcare needs, they often aren’t aware of the funds available.
What’s more, patients are sometimes unable to have assistance with the funding process, with some people dying before a decision on eligibility materialises.
The report also revealed that in 2015-16 over a third of assents took longer than 28 days.
Discussing the findings, Committee chair, MP Meg Hillier MP said: “Conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease and multiple sclerosis have devastating effects on sufferers and their loved ones. Help with meeting the costs of ongoing care can make a critical difference to their quality of life.
“It is therefore distressing to see the system intended to support such people fall short on so many fronts.”
The Public Accounts Committee has urged NHS England and the Department of Health to ‘recognise that the system is not working as well as it should’ and ‘ensure CCGs are meeting their responsibilities, or to address the variation between areas in accessing essential funding.’