Fair access to care services (FACS): prioritising eligibility for care and support

Assessment - Resource allocation: where do the priorities lie?

The aim of the Resource Allocation System (RAS) should be to provide a transparent system for the allocation of resources, linking money to outcomes while taking account of the different levels of support people need to achieve their goals. It allows people to know how much money they have available to spend so that they can make choices and direct the way their support is provided.

(‘Personalisation and support planning’, DH, 2010, para 129)

The ‘Personalisation and support planning’ section of the 2010 DH Guidance identifies the need for local authorities, and other organisations involved in FACS processes, to have a transparent system for allocating resources within agreed priorities. To achieve this, staff should be able to:

Self-funding and charging

Deidre’s story – assessment helping a self-funder to choose and plan care

Deidre, aged 84, has Parkinson’s disease. She moved to adapted housing near her daughter, who often works away from home in the week. An assessment identifies Deidre’s need for visits twice a day. Because she has a good pension and owns her own home, she is not eligible for publicly funded care. When Deidre’s daughter and the home carer recognise that she needs more support, a review of her care plan leads to increased support which Deidre pays for.

Laing and Buisson [20] estimate that 43 per cent of older or physically disabled residents in independent care homes fund the entire cost of their care – this goes up to 49 per cent of residents in nursing homes. When individuals or carers are seeking or are referred for an assessment, they should be made aware that:

Staff carrying out financial assessments should handle the task sensitively, recognising that individuals and carers may find it embarrassing or demeaning to be examined on all aspects of their capital, income and outgoings. Individuals and carers should be given a clear statement of the basis for any charges, how they can challenge or appeal the results, and sources of reliable and independent financial advice.


All SCIE resources are free to download, however to access the following download you will need a free MySCIE account:

Available downloads:

  • Fair access to care services (FACS): prioritising eligibility for care and support