In response to a legal challenge brought by Care England (with assistance from David Collins Solicitors) threatening judicial review proceedings, the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) has agreed to reconsider the 2019/20 Funded Nursing Care (FNC) rate and, based on that reconsideration, to re-take its decision about what the rate should be. The DHSC has agreed to engage with Care England as part of that process.
The concerns raised by Care England which formed the basis of its legal challenge, addressed
• The assumption that providers will not employ more than 10% nursing hours through agency nurses
• That providers are capable of making efficiency savings of 3.1%
• The approach adopted in the calculation of inflation, limiting it to £1.40.
Professor Martin Green OBE, Chief Executive of Care England, says:
“We welcome the move by the DHSC to look again at the 2019/20 rate and we will ensure we participate openly and fully with the review. We hope this can be conducted speedily and a new rate decision made that increases the current rate to that which properly reflects the costs of providing nursing to many thousands of people living in nursing homes.”
Care England is now in discussion with DHSC about the terms and timings of the review and will keep members informed as to progress going forward.