Alternatives to living in your own home

Residential and nursing care

Moving into a residential care home or a nursing home is an important decision and this page will hopefully help you understand some of the issues to consider.

Differences between residential care and nursing homes

The main difference is the type of care they offer. A residential care home provides accommodation and meals, leisure activities and personal care. A nursing home is similar to a residential care home, but must also have qualified nurses on the premises. Nursing home care is usually more expensive.

Why choose residential or nursing care?

You may be finding it difficult to look after yourself at home, perhaps because of a recent illness, or because you are getting more frail. There are a number of different services that may make your life easier. Residential care is one possibility; other services include homecare, day services, meals on wheels, home adaptations and aids to daily living, all of which may help you to continue to live independently.

Assessing your needs

Making a decision to move into a care home is not easy, particularly if you are unwell or bereaved. If you would like help from us please contact the Information, Advice and Assistance (IAA) Team. We will then arrange for a needs assessment to be carried out to find out whether residential care is right for you and what other services are available.

You might want to ask a friend or relative to be present to help you explain things.

If you would like more information on all residential and nursing care homes in the borough, you may want to look at the Good Care Guide website. The Good Care Guide is an independent forum that has been developed to allow people to find, rate and review local childcare and eldercare throughout Britain.

Paying for residential and nursing care

If you need to go into residential or nursing care, the 'National Assistance Act' requires that you pay something towards the cost of your accommodation. For furhter information, please view our Paying for Care web page

Other alternatives 

  • Residential learning disability homes are provided for adults who need support as a result of a learning disability. A registered care home is a house that is shared with other people and where staff are available 24/7 to provide support.

  • Supported Living Schemes help vulnerable adults to live full and independent lives by providing support and personal care in a person's own home.

  • Extra care schemes combines the advantages of high quality, self-contained accommodation and the provision of flexible care and support services.

  • Shared Lives Scheme combines the advantages of high quality, self-contained accommodation and the provision of flexible care and support services.

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