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Harm that is caused by anyone with power over someone else, whether they are family, friends, carers or health or social care workers. This can take the form of verbal, emotional, sexual or financial abuse as well as physical maltreatment and neglect.

A person or team in a residential care or nursing home who organises meaningful and enjoyable activities and trips out for elderly people. See Wellbeing activities

Eating, washing, dressing and using the toilet are examples of what you do every day to look after yourself. An assessment of your needs (also called a care needs assessment) will review how well you manage such activities, and what help and support you might need.

Healthcare that you receive in hospital following an injury, operation or illness.

If you are considering a deferred payment agreement with your local council to pay for your care, the council must ensure that there is ‘adequate security’ and that you can afford to repay them eventually. This security may be the value of your house, a valuable possession or someone who can guarantee that payment will be made. See Deferred payments

Admiral Nurses provide specialist dementia support for those affected by all types of dementia, (including Alzheimer’s disease, vascular dementia, frontotemporal dementia and dementia with Lewy bodies) and their families. Most work in a variety of settings – out in the community and within care homes, hospitals and hospices.

See Vulnerable adult

Care and support for adults (including older people, those with a mental health problem, disability or long-term illness and their carers) who need help to manage their lives and retain independence. It incorporates a care needs assessment, provision of services or allocation of funds for you to purchase care and support, such as residential or home care, day services, aids and adaptations and personal budgets.

Voluntarily planning your future treatment, care and what you wish to happen at the end of your life. You may involve family and friends in the process, and it can be documented and communicated to everyone involved in your care.

A legally binding decision (in England and Wales) that you make about the medical treatment you would or would not wish to have in future, if you could not make decisions yourself because of illness or because you lack the capacity to consent.

A (non-legally binding) written document about your wishes, feelings and preferences regarding your future care and support, in case you become unable to tell others. It can cover any aspect of your care, such as where you want to live and how you like to do things. You can write it yourself, with support from family, friends and your GP.

This is charged if a resident who has been in our care for more than six months passes away while in our care. It is equivalent to seven days’ fees and holds the room while we can clear it of personal belongings and prepare it for a new resident.

An independent organisation that provides care and support services, such as home care. This can be arranged by your local council or by contacting an agency yourself.

Equipment such as grab rails, ramps, walk-in showers and stair lifts that can help you move around your home more easily and safely, and live more comfortably and independently.

A concern that is raised about a vulnerable adult who may be a victim of neglect or abuse. Anyone can raise an alert by contacting the adults’ services department of the local council.

People such as physiotherapists, occupational therapists, dietitians, podiatrists – but not doctors, nurses or pharmacists – who provide different types of health care.

If you appear to need care or support, the law (Care Act 2014) says that you are entitled to have an assessment. You need to contact your local council or go online. See care needs assessment

A money-managing service that may be offered by your council. The council can receive benefit payments on your behalf and arrange payment of your living costs. There may be a fee to pay.

A type of NHS contract that allows both NHS and non-NHS organisations to provide NHS services. The AQP programme aims to give patients more choice about where they receive selected health services.

A tool that measures how well local care and support services achieve people’s desired outcomes, and how positive their experiences are of health and social care.

Things you have that can include possessions (such as a house, car or savings accounts), equipment, particular knowledge and skills or relationships.

Help that you may be offered if you are discharged from hospital and you live alone, for example. Volunteers or a homecare service can take you home and get you settled, shopping and preparing food for you, if needed.

Any product or service designed to enhance someone’s quality of life or help them achieve greater independence. These include a mobile phone, an electronic medicine dispenser, memory prompt, ‘big button’ telephone or remote control and pendant alarm, as well as equipment that can detect potential hazards in your home or alert a carer/the emergency services if you have a fall or seizure.

This helps pay for personal care if you have a physical or mental disability that requires you to be looked after by someone else, or if you are elderly. It is paid at two separate rates, depending on your requirements. Being in receipt of Attendance Allowance can also mean any other benefits you may receive are paid at a higher rate. You can claim this even if you don’t have someone looking after you.

Someone who can request direct payments from a local council on behalf of a person who does not have capacity to do this themselves. This person must act in your best interests and be able to manage your direct payments for you.

Having control and choice over your life and the freedom to decide what happens to you. You should still be able to make your own choices and be treated with dignity, however great your need for care and support.


Payments from the Government (Department of Work and Pensions) that people may receive because of their age, income, caring responsibilities or disability. Some benefits are paid to everyone regardless of income (universal), some are paid to those with particular needs, while others are means-tested – only paid to people whose income or savings are below a certain level.

Other people should act in your ‘best interests’ if you are unable to make decisions for yourself (for example, about your health or your finances). Best interests are not defined in law but there are guidelines for what people must consider when they decide what is best for you. These include your wishes, feelings and beliefs, personal circumstances and the views of your family and friends.

An independent person who considers whether someone who lacks capacity and is in hospital or a care home is there for the right reasons, and whether it is in their best interests to remain there.

The most effective and proven way of doing something.

A range of nonverbal signals that people use when communicating feelings and intentions. These include posture, facial expressions, eye contact and hand gestures. Also known as non-verbal communication.


Your strengths, what you can do now and could potentially do with help and support.

The ability to make your own choices and decisions, as defined by the Mental Capacity Act. To do this, you must be able to understand and remember information and communicate clearly – either verbally or non-verbally – what you have decided. Someone may lack capacity because of dementia, a mental health problem or learning disability.

An account set up by your council to keep track of the costs of meeting your care and support needs, whether or not it pays for these.

A law passed in England that sets out what care and support you are entitled to and how health and social care professionals should work with you. Councils must consider your wellbeing, assess your needs and help you get independent financial advice on paying for care and support. The Act puts people and their carers in control of their care and support.

A method used by some councils to work out how much a person’s care and support will cost, based on how much help they need, as well as their own views.

A home that you live in with other people and where you are looked after and supported by care staff. You are provided with a room, meals and personal care. The homes may be privately owned or run by a local council or charity, but all are regularly inspected by the Care Quality Commission.

The process of determining what help or support you may need because of your age, illness or disability. It also helps the local authority to decide whether or not you qualify for council-funded care and support. You can request a care needs assessment via your local council’s adult social services department or online.

A document that describes and records your care needs during an assessment for NHS continuing healthcare.  See NHS continuing healthcare

The package of services offered to you by your council, following an assessment of your needs. This may include personal care, day services and aids and adaptations for your home.

A plan that sets out your care and support needs, how these will be met, what services you will receive and your own priorities and aspirations. This is put together by health and social services following a care needs assessment. The daily routine for care home residents may also be called a care plan and should be accessible to the resident, the family, carers and the emergency services.

Information about you that is collected and kept by organisations that assess your needs and provide care and support services. It includes basic personal details, information about your health, ability to carry out activities of daily living, and what has been agreed about your care and support. You have the right to see your own records and receive a copy of all assessments and care plans.

A person who is paid to support someone who is ill, struggling or disabled and unable to manage without this help. This could be in a residential care home or in the person’s own home.

A person who provides unpaid help to a partner, family member, friend or neighbour who is ill, struggling or disabled and could not otherwise manage.

A weekly government payment that you may be able to claim if you help and support a partner, family member, friend or neighbour who could not otherwise manage.

If you are an unpaid carer for a family member or friend, you have the right to discuss your own needs (separate to those of the person you care for) with your local council, which uses this information to decide what help it can offer you. See necessary care

Behaviour that may cause harm to the person or those around them such as aggression, self-harm and disruptive or destructive behaviour. Such behaviour can be caused by a difficulty in communicating needs, perhaps because someone has autism, dementia, a learning disability or mental health problem, and they may need specialist support.

Services, such as day or home care, that your local council may expect you to contribute towards. Such charges must, by law, be reasonable and councils must follow government guidelines to ensure this. The council cannot charge you for non-chargeable services.

Ongoing care outside hospital, arranged and funded by the NHS following a care needs assessment, for someone who is ill or disabled, whose need for daily support arises mainly for health rather than social care reasons. It may also cover care in a nursing home.

If you live in a care home and your fees are paid by your local council, you have the right to say where you wish to live, even if a care home is outside your local area. The council should try to arrange a place in the home you prefer, as long as it meets your needs and does not cost more than the council would usually expect to pay. If your choice of home costs more, you can still have a place there if you or someone else pays the difference in cost.

A persistent or long-lasting and incurable illness or health condition that is managed with medicines, treatments, care and support.

The contribution that people who receive non-residential social care services may have to make towards the cost of their care, following a financial assessment.

A group of GP practices in a particular area that work together to plan and design local health services, such as hospital or community-based care and rehabilitation.

A system through which healthcare organisations are accountable for sustaining high standards of patient care and seeking continuous improvements. Organisations have a duty to their communities and must show evidence that standards are being upheld.

When you are living with more than one health condition at the same time.

A problem with your brain that may make it difficult for you to remember things, solve problems, make decisions or learn new things. You may have had it from birth or as a result of illness or injury.

The team – comprising psychiatrists, psychologists, nurses, social workers and occupational therapists – organises the treatment and care of people with complex or serious mental health problems. They work with other care providers, such as GPs, hospitals, care agencies/homes, hospices and voluntary organisations.

An expression of displeasure with a service or the actions of others towards you.

People with one or more complex needs – such as illness, disability, loss of sight or hearing – need high levels of support with daily life and rely on help from various health and social care services.

Keeping information about someone secure and private, and not sharing it without the person’s knowledge and agreement.

This can refer to seeing the same doctor (or other care professional) for every appointment or your care being co-ordinated by several different professionals who communicate well with each other and with you. This is key if you have a long-term condition or complex needs.

An English court that makes decisions about the health, welfare, property and finances of those who lack the mental capacity to make decisions for themselves. The court can appoint a ‘deputy’ to make ongoing decisions on behalf of someone who lacks capacity and grant power of attorney.

An organisation that carries out regular inspections to check that hospitals, care homes, dentists, GPs and home care agencies in England provide care that is safe, caring, effective, responsive and well led.


The amount you must pay for rent, food and bills if you live in a care home.

If you need residential care, the council will assess your needs and decide if you can afford to pay for a care home. This may mean selling your house, so the council may help pay the fees while you wait for your house to be sold, and then you will have to repay the council. See Adequate security

A period of time that you have to remain in hospital, after an illness or accident, while care is arranged in your own home, a care home or elsewhere.

A disorder of the mental processes caused by brain disease or injury. It is a persistent and progressive condition that it gets worse over time and eventually affects every aspect of a person’s life. The term ‘dementia’ describes several different conditions affecting the brain, including Alzheimer’s disease, frontotemporal dementia and vascular dementia.

Someone who is knowledgeable about dementia and can provide support or suggestions for how to access support if you, or someone you are close to, has been diagnosed with dementia.

Looking after someone with symptoms of dementia to meet their needs safely and help them enjoy the best possible quality of life and wellbeing.

Places or communities that are dementia friendly understand, respect and support people who have dementia. So they can continue to live where and how they choose with the appropriate support.

Those who are trained to help people with dementia (and their carer or family) access the support and help that they need.

When you deliberately reduce the amount of your savings or property so that you can qualify for benefits from the council or help with paying care costs.

DoLS is an amendment to the Mental Capacity Act 2005 and ensures that people who are unable to make decisions about their own care, support, property and finances are protected and that their care arrangements (in a hospital or care home) are in their best interests. DoLS will be replaced by Liberty Protection Safeguards (LPS) in 2022. See Liberty Protection Safeguards

Someone appointed by the Court of Protection to make decisions on your behalf about your property and financial affairs or your health and welfare, or both, if you lack capacity to make them yourself and have not already given someone power of attorney. This can be family or friends or a professional, such as a solicitor.

Being worthy of respect as a human being and being treated as such by everyone involved in your care and support.

A national campaign led by the National Dignity Council to put respect and dignity at the centre of care services in the UK.

Money that the council pays regularly to you (or someone acting on your behalf) for you to organise your own support, rather than receiving council-arranged social care services, if you have been assessed as being eligible for council-funded social care, but not yet for residential care.

Where patients are supported and funded to leave hospital when it is safe and appropriate to do so. Assessment for longer-term care and support needs is then undertaken in the most appropriate setting and at the right time for the person. This can also be called ‘home first’, ‘safely home’ or ‘step down’.

Your weekly income if you have a deferred payment arrangement with your local council. The council pays for your care and you use most of your income (from pension or benefits) to contribute towards the cost of your care, but you can keep a certain amount to pay for the cost of looking after your house. When this is sold you will reimburse the council.

Respecting people’s differences in age, race, gender, sexual orientation, religious beliefs, physical abilities and backgrounds.

This medical order written by a doctor instructs health care providers not to perform cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) if a patient’s heart or breathing stops.

A paid care worker provides help and support to someone at home to help them maintain their independence. They are usually employed by an independent agency, and the service may be arranged by your local council or by you (or someone acting on your behalf).

When something goes wrong with the health or social care that you receive, the care-providing organisation has a legal duty to explain openly what has happened and apologise to you.


Specialist stroke rehabilitation services provided within a community setting, usually a patient’s home, after a discharge from hospital.

When your needs fit the criteria that enable you to receive a service.

Your needs for care and support that your council is legally required to meet. Examples of ‘eligible needs’ include help for washing and dressing yourself, getting in and out of bed and keeping your home safe.

EMI care is the provision of care for older people with mental frailty, often living with the advanced stages of dementia.

Advance and palliative care in residential or nursing homes, hospitals, primary care and hospices for adults with advanced, progressive illness.

The time you spend receiving one type of care for a specific condition. An inpatient or respite stay in a hospital may count as a single episode of care.

When every individual is treated fairly, regardless of their age, race, gender, disability, belief, sexual orientation, and has an equal chance to make the most of their life.

A list of everything you own, such as property, shares, money, jewellery and personal possessions.

The person who deals with the estate of someone who has died. This person, who can be a family member, a friend or solicitor, is named in the will as responsible for dealing with the estate.

You live in your own home with additional care and support if you have an illness or disability. It is similar to sheltered housing.


A discussion between you and your council to work out how much you can afford to pay towards any care and support that you need. It involves looking at your income, savings and individual circumstances and takes place after an assessment of your care and support needs. See means test

If you go to stay in a care home and a local authority undertakes a financial assessment to check whether or not you are eligible to receive financial assistance, it will not take into account the value of your property for the first 12 weeks. If you are eligible to receive financial help during this period, the amount that the local authority may be prepared to pay may not cover the total amount of our fees. As a result you may be asked to pay the shortfall, and this is called a ‘First Party Top Up’ (also referred to in conjunction with the Twelve-Week Property Disregard).

A flat-rate sum paid by the NHS for the nursing care component of your nursing home fees, regardless of whether your care is paid for by yourself or your local council. It is paid directly to the care home. You will usually be assessed for NHS continuing healthcare before a decision is made about whether your eligibility for NHS-funded nursing care.

As people age, they are more likely to become weaker, less mobile, suffer with complex medical problems and impaired mental abilities, and be less able to live independently. They frequently need help with daily activities such as getting dressed, eating and going to the toilet.

When a care professional looks at what you can do for yourself, and how well you can manage everyday tasks such as dressing, preparing food and looking after your home.


A person or an organisation (such as a local authority) who is legally appointed to make best-interest decisions on behalf of another if they are unable to do this for themselves, whether due to ill health, old age or other unforeseen circumstances.


See domiciliary care


A physical or mental problem caused by a condition you were born with, an injury or illness.

Creating an environment where everyone in a community feels comfortable, respected, treated as equals, have their needs met and with no barriers to achieving their potential.

The ability of someone to make their own choices and make the most of their skills in carrying out daily tasks, taking account of the support that’s needed and available. Independence also relates to the opportunity to set and achieve individual goals, however small, to contribute to the lives of family and friends and enjoy favourite activities.

The right to make informed decisions, optimise your own abilities, receive the assistance and support required for you to participate in your community and live the life you choose.

Joined up health and social care that is organised around your particular needs and preferences, as well as your carer (if applicable) and your family. It may also require cooperation with other services, such as housing or social services.

If you want to use your personal budget from the council to pay for support (such as home care) from a particular provider, the money can be held by that provider in an Individual Service Fund. You remain in control of what the money is spent on, but you don’t have the responsibility of managing the budget yourself. See personal budget


Someone who acts as a single point of contact for you, often in a residential care home. They help co-ordinate your care and can also provide information and advice.

A term used by CQC to describe questions asked during its inspections of care homes and other services – are they safe, effective, caring and well run? Do they meet people’s needs?


An organisation that investigates complaints about adult social care.

A long stay is a period of residence in a care home that is usually longer than two weeks. For our homes, this is a period of 31 days.

This scheme will replace DoLS in 2022 and extends legal protection to everyone over the age of 16 who needs to be deprived of their liberty to enable care or treatment and lack the mental capacity to consent to such arrangements. This now covers people living in their own home or supported living, as well as in a hospital, hospice or residential care home. LPS puts their rights and wishes at the centre of all decision-making. See Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards


Person-centred software that records details of every care action with residents. The efficiency of its streamlined care plans and care evidence records frees up carers to spend more time with residents.

The council looks at how much money you have and works out what it will pay towards the cost of your care. Currently, if you have savings of less than £23,250, you will generally receive help, although the more money you have, the more you will need to pay. As a result of new rules, from October 2023, social care will be free to people with less than £20,000 while those with assets below £100,000 will get some help towards their costs. There will also be a lifetime cap on some costs with increased means test limits. So people will expect to spend no more than £86,000 on the cost of their care, although this ceiling does not include food or accommodation if they live in a care home. See financial assessment

The ability to make decisions for yourself about key aspects of your life, such as your care, support, property and finances, for example.

This provides legal protection for those who cannot make decisions about their care and support, property or finances, because of a mental health condition, learning disability, brain injury or illness.. They may legally lose the right to make decisions if this is in their best interests. Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (DoLS) and now Liberty Protection Safeguards (LPS) ensure that people are treated fairly.

After contributing financially to any care services that you receive, your weekly income should not fall below a level called the ‘Minimum Income Guarantee’. Its purpose is to promote independence and social inclusion, ensuring that you have sufficient funds to meet basic needs such as food and heating.


A term defined in law that refers to a single family member who is given certain rights and responsibilities if you are kept in hospital (also known as being ‘sectioned’). Nearest relative is not the same as ‘next of kin’ and may not necessarily be the person you have given power of attorney to (if applicable).

Care and support provided by an unpaid carer, such as a family member or friend. You may be entitled to support from the council and could request a carer’s assessment. See carer’s assessment

When you are mistreated by not being given sufficient care and support by others if you are unable to care for yourself, for example not being given enough or the right kind of food or help to wash, or not having access to the doctor when needed.

The organisation that determines which are the most important health issues in England and how NHS money should be spent. It supports the NHS to deliver the NHS Long Term Plan and provide improved care for patients.

An organisation that provides advice and guidance to improve health and social care services in England and Wales. It looks at the evidence of what works, what doesn’t, the costs, and then advises on what treatment and care should be offered to people.

Introduced by the Care Act 2014, these are minimum standards by which local authorities must meet someone’s need for care and support following an assessment. The threshold is based on identifying how an individual’s needs affect their ability to achieve relevant desired outcomes, and what impact this might have on their wellbeing.

If you receive direct payments from the council to arrange your own care and support, you can choose a ‘nominated person’ – someone you trust – to receive these payments on your behalf.

Services and support, such as home care and day care, which help people to remain independent at home.

Information that is gathered about your needs and potential risks for inclusion in a care plan.

Support with day-today living as well as medical care and treatment for people with complex long-term health needs such as dementia or Parkinson’s disease.

Provides 24/7 care and support, including personal care (washing, dressing or going to the toilet) in a residential setting. Nursing home residents receive round-the clock medical support from qualified nursing staff for ongoing illnesses, as well as treatments including injections. They will have specialist nursing equipment on hand.


People aged over 65 and who are the usually the biggest users of adult social care services.

Your main place of residence which is used to determine which council assesses your needs and potentially funds your care and support.

A professional (employed by the NHS or a local council) who specialises in working with people with disabilities or mental health needs. OTs can teach new skills or help you regain ones you have lost, and also arrange for any necessary aids and adaptations for your home.

Your council may offer you a residential care placement outside your home area, if there is nowhere suitable more locally or because you wish to move to a different area. Your home council remains responsible for checking that your care continues to meet your needs.

An aim or objective you want or need to achieve, such as remaining in your own home or being able to go out and about. You can say which outcomes are most important to you, and receive support to achieve them.

A method for measuring how well services deliver results for people and comparing results in different areas.


Care given to people with an advanced and incurable progressive illness in a care home, hospital, hospice or their own home. The primary aim is to manage pain and other symptoms and help the person achieve their best possible quality of life.

An organisation that investigates complaints about the NHS.

A written record of how a particular illness or condition should be managed, including the process of care and expected outcomes. A pathway also refers to other health and social care processes such as obtaining equipment for someone.

An event that is not supposed to happen that caused actual (or potential) harm to someone receiving healthcare.

The amount of money you are allowed to keep for your own personal needs if you move into a care home and care costs take up all your income or savings.

Care and support that is based around the needs, preferences and priorities of the person receiving it. They are an equal partner, according to the principle of ‘no decision about me without me’.

Funds allocated to you by your local council to pay for care or support to meet your assessed needs. You can take it as a direct payment or ask the council to arrange services (sometimes known as a managed budget) – or a mix of the two. See individual service fund

Help with getting up, washing, dressing, going to the toilet, eating, drinking, going to bed, taking medicines and other personal activities.

A plan that contains information about someone’s health, lifestyle and options for treatment or care. It is developed by the patient/client and their healthcare professional and offers someone a greater say and responsibility in the management of their care.

A regular benefit payment for people aged between 16 and 64 that helps with extra costs arising from long-term illness or disability. The amount depends on how your condition affects you and how much help you need with the activities of daily living, not on the condition itself. It is based solely on your needs and is unaffected by your income or savings, whether you work or receive other benefits.

A legal decision you make to allow a specific person to act or make decisions on your behalf if you later become unable to do so. There are two types. With ordinary power of attorney you give someone the power to handle your financial affairs for you, possibly in the short term, although you continue to make decisions about your money unless and until you lose the mental capacity to do so. Lasting power of attorney is where you allow someone to make decisions for you about your property and finances or health and welfare, if the time comes when you are unable to make these decisions for yourself. All LPAs must be registered with the Office of the Public Guardian.

Protective equipment such as face masks, gloves and aprons, that protect your health and safety and help avoid the spread of infectious illness.

An appointment to discuss your needs and what care you receive before you are admitted into a care or nursing home, or a hospital.

A decision made by your local council about whether a full care needs assessment is necessary. This is based on information given by you or the person who refers you to adult social care.

The first people you see within the NHS, such GPs, community nurses, pharmacists and dentists.

Spending time alone or with family or friends without others seeing you or overhearing your conversations. It also means respecting confidentiality and not sharing your personal information with anyone else unless you agree to this.

Encouraging the person in your care to do as much as they can for themselves so that they can remain in their own home and live a healthy, active live for as long as possible. This includes maintaining social connections and making decisions about their care and support.

A way of establishing an accurate picture of someone’s needs without asking for unnecessary amounts of information.

An organisation that provides services.

An executive agency of the Department of Health and Social Care in England that exists to protect and improve the nation’s health and wellbeing and reduce health inequalities. PHE provides “evidence-based professional, scientific expertise and support” to national and local government, the NHS, Parliament, industry and the general public.


A structure for measuring and improving the quality of services provided by an organisation. Quality is measured in various ways, including hearing the views and experiences of people who use services. The process enables strengths and weakness to be identified and consolidated/addressed, so the organisation can deliver the best-quality care and support to users.

Your level of happiness, wellbeing and overall satisfaction with your life. How you define this depends on what matters most to you and what makes your life enjoyable and meaningful. Any care and support should make a positive difference to your quality of life.


An assessment of your needs or finances may be reviewed if something about your situation has changed.

A request to have your needs assessed by a social care organisation. You can refer yourself to adult social care or be referred by your GP, another health professional or anyone who supports you, by contacting the adult social care department at your local council.

A person who is in day-to-day charge of regulated services provided at a residential care home or home care agency. They must be registered with the Care Quality Commission.

A person or organisation with the legal power to supervise a specific service, activity or organisation. They must ensure compliance with the required regulatory framework so that people/users receive products and services that are safe and of good quality.

Accommodation where frail or older people, or those with disabilities, receive 24-hour care and support with or without nursing care. Trained staff provide help with personal care (such as washing and dressing), eating, giving medication and mobility, for example. Homes may be registered to supply specific types of care need, such as palliative, end-of-life or dementia.

Being treated well and as if you, your views and feelings matter to the person or organisation you are dealing with. This is enshrined in law – the Health and Social Care Act 2008 (Regulations 2014) states that people must be treated with respect and dignity while receiving care and treatment.

Short-term care for someone in their own home or in a residential setting. This can be to cover a carer’s holiday or convalescence in a residential care or nursing home following a hospital stay if you are not ready to return to your own home, especially if adaptations are needed for you to live safely and independently.

Care that is flexible enough to adapt to any changes in your situation.

Care that is flexible enough to adapt to any changes in your situation.

When you receive a re-assessment of your needs and you and your family/carers look at whether the services you are receiving are still meeting your needs and helping you achieve your chosen outcomes. Changes can be made if necessary.

What you are entitled to receive and how you should be treated as a citizen. If you have a disability or mental health problem, are elderly or act as a carer for someone else, you have the right to have your needs assessed by your local council. You have a right to a service or direct payment if your assessment puts you above the eligibility threshold your council is using. You and your carers have a right to be consulted about your assessment and about any changes in the services you receive.

An assessment of your health, safety, wellbeing and ability to manage your daily life.

Identifying and assessing potential risks to your health or wellbeing and taking steps to help you reduce or prevent these.


Ensuring that vulnerable adults are not being abused, neglected or exploited, and that people who are deemed ‘unsuitable’ do not work with them. This is the responsibility of the adult social care department at your local council. Councils have a duty to work with other organisations to protect adults from abuse and neglect.

A service that supports adults with acquired communication and swallowing difficulties as a result of stroke, dementia, brain injury, voice disorders and other medical or neurological conditions. Following an assessment, the SALT team gives advice and therapy that is targeted to the person’s individual needs to help them with, for example, language, communication, memory, swallowing, eating and drinking. The SALT team works closely with carers and other health professionals.

A review carried out by a local Safeguarding Adults Board (SAB) when a vulnerable adult has died or been harmed, and someone knows or suspects that they have been abused or neglected. The review seeks to find out what happened, what should have been done differently and any lessons learned.

If you are in residential care and receiving savings credit, some of this will be disregarded, or not considered when the council assesses how much you can afford to pay towards your care.

Speaking up for yourself about what you want and how you want to live your life, potentially about care and support you receive or about services available in your area.

An online or paper form that you complete yourself (with the help of a social care worker or advocate, if you wish) explaining your circumstances and why you need support. Councils use this information to decide if you are eligible for social care services or if you need a full assessment by a social worker.

An approach that puts you at the centre of the support planning process, so that you can make choices about the care and support services you receive.

You arrange and pay for your own care services without financial help from the council.

When one or more of your senses – sight, hearing, smell, touch, taste – does not work properly. It does not necessarily mean a total loss of the sense(s). You may be born with a sensory impairment or develop it later in life.

Anyone who uses health and care services in any setting – residential care, hospital or your own home. You will probably be called a ‘patient’ by the NHS, a ‘client’, ‘service user’ or a ‘cared-for person’ by your council and others.

See respite care

Any help that you need, such as personal care or practical assistance, to live your life as comfortably and independently as possible, because of age, illness or disability.

They offer specialist advice and support – palliative care – for patients who have progressive, life-limiting illnesses.

When a hospital patient needs less intensive care than before and is moved to a new facility or ward for rehabilitative care before returning home. This may include early supported discharge. See early supported discharge

Short-term support (possibly for up to six weeks) that may be available in, for example, a care home if you are temporarily unable to remain in your own home but don’t need a hospital bed or to live permanently in residential care.

Someone who manages direct payments in the best interests of a person without mental capacity and ensures that they receive the best care. The council decides if someone is a ‘suitable person’, and oversees the arrangement.

A person who is paid to provide practical help and support, enabling you to live as independently as possible and do the things you wish to do.

Getting the support necessary for you to make your own decisions or express your wishes and preferences to someone else, if they are making decisions for you.

Accommodation options, including sheltered housing, retirement housing and specialist housing schemes, for people with physical or learning disabilities. You’ll receive assistance to enable you to manage day to day while living in your own home. If you have high care and support needs, extra-care housing is likely to be a more suitable option.


If you are moving into council-funded residential care that costs more than the council believes is necessary to meet your needs, a third party (such as a relative, friend, charity) must agree to pay the difference. They must enter into a contract with the council confirming the arrangement.

The nurse-led Tissue Viability Service provides specialist advice and care to patients with, or at risk of developing, wounds.

The additional amount that someone will have to pay for you if you wish to live in a care home that costs more than the council believes is necessary to meet your needs. The key aspect is that this is your choice: a top-up fee should only be charged if you have requested a more expensive care home, not because the council is unwilling to pay what a care home costs.

This refers to the charges that the resident (or their representative) is responsible for paying (usually on a monthly basis) for accommodation and care services provide to them by a care home. These are set out in an agreement between the resident and the care home.

When you move between different care settings (such as from hospital to your home, supported housing or residential care). This transfer should be properly planned and co-ordinated by the various health and social care agencies.

Care home residents usually start on the basis of a four-week initial trial period to enable the home to assess their suitability for a permanent stay. Either the resident or the home can give notice to terminate, most usually with seven days’ notice, at any time during this trial period.

See First Party Top Up.


An adult who may need care and support because of their age, illness or disability, and may be unable to protect themselves from harm, neglect or abuse.


Having good physical and mental health, control over your day-to-day life, protection from abuse and neglect, fulfilling relationships, sufficient money, and the opportunity to take part in the activities and hobbies that interest you.

Hobbies and activities designed to keep people physically and mentally active, engaged and fulfilled, with a sense of purpose and self-worth. Every residential care setting has a regulatory requirement to organise activities, which must be recorded in a resident’s care notes. See Activities co-ordinator

A legal document that sets out your wishes regarding who should inherit your estate and what should happen after you die. It also includes instructions for the care of any children or pets, your preferred funeral arrangements and the distribution of your possessions.

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