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Residential and nursing home care

There are two main types of care homes: residential and nursing.

  • Residential homes are for people who can no longer cope at home and need extra help, such as providing meals and personal care.
  • Nursing homes are for people whose illness or infirmity requires nursing care on a regular or daily basis, so they have qualified nurses on the premises.

Some care homes provide care both with and without nursing. These are known as 'dual-registered' homes. The advantage of these homes is that if your needs increase you can continue to receive the right level of care without having to move again.

Many residential and nursing homes can offer placements on a short-term basis, or placements for more long-term or permanent care.

All care homes are regulated by the Care Quality Commission (CQC). CQC regularly inspect homes to see if they meet the essential standards of quality and safety and publish what they find.

Will I have to pay?

The costs of residential homes vary, often depending on the type of facilities provided and the amount and type of care you need.

The amount you have to pay is determined through a financial assessment. You can now do your financial assessment online where you'll be able to see what you may have to pay towards your care and support. Any information you enter will not be sent to us, unless you choose to submit it.

If you are not eligible for financial support from your council, you can approach most homes directly to organise your own care.

If you require nursing care, depending on eligibility, you may be eligible for NHS Continuing Healthcare payments that are paid directly to nursing homes towards your nursing costs. Find out if you are eligible on our Continuing Healthcare page.

Search our online directory of care and support – Surrey Information Point - for care homes near you, view their CQC rating, and access the inspection report.

You can also visit our Paying for Care Services page for more information.

Choosing a care home

NHS Choices - Care Homes is a national website which contains information and helpful hints on choosing a care home, types of care homes, and trial periods in care homes.