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Care homes

Care homes provide accommodation and personal care for older people, people with disabilities, and people who may be nearing the end of life. Care homes usually offer long-term accommodation and care, but some may also offer short stay, temporary care.

Types of care home

There are two main types of home:

Residential care homes

These types of home offer care and support throughout the day and night and, if needed, their staff will help with things like washing, dressing and going to the toilet as well as providing support at meal times.

Nursing homes

These offer the same services as a residential home but also provide 24 hour care from a qualified nurse.

How are care homes run?

Care homes can be owned and run by private companies, voluntary organisations or your local authority. They can vary in size from small dwellings to large communal centres.

How much do care homes cost?

Care home costs vary and most people have to pay something towards their fees. The cost can depend on the type of care home, the location, and how long you stay.

If you’ve had a needs assessment through social services and it’s been recommended that you move into a care home, your local authority may contribute to the fees depending on your income and any savings that you have.

If you need to live in a nursing home, then the NHS may fund the nursing part of the costs through NHS continuing healthcare.


More information

If you’re interested in being cared for in a care home, speak to your GP or district nurse. You can read more about care homes on the NHS Choices website.