Health support - children with disabilities and learning needs

Continuing care and personal health budgets for children - specialist services

A small number of children and young people who have very complex health needs may need additional health support to that which is routinely available from our universal or targeted health services. This is provided by NHS South East London Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG). 

NHS continuing healthcare, also known as NHS continuing care or "fully funded NHS care", is free care for outside of hospital that is arranged and funded by the NHS. This means that you will receive care and support to meet your assessed needs at no cost to you. For more information on this please visit the NHS Choices link

To find out if  your child or young person is eligible for Continuing Care for please contact the Integrated Children’s Community Nursing Team

Tel: 02083154691 or email:

Children’s personal health budgets 

A personal health budget is an amount of money to support a child or young person's individual health needs which is planned and agreed between the child/family and their local NHS team. Children or young people who meet the Continuing Care criteria are eligible to request a personal health budget.

There are three ways you can have a  personal budget. You can have:

  • Direct payments made into your account - you buy and manage services yourself
  • No actual money as the local NHS service has commissioned support on your behalf
  • Third-party arrangements - you choose someone else to manage the money for you

What is a personal health budget?

Patients receiving children’s Continuing Care can apply for a personal health budget (PHB). This is an amount of NHS money to meet your health and wellbeing needs.

In Bromley we are offering PHBs for children and young people who have complex health needs and who are also eligible for children and young people's continuing care.

Through personal budgets children/young people and their families are empowered to tailor services to suit their individual circumstances.

PHBs are a key component of the national personalisation agenda, which aims to put individuals firmly in the driving seat of building a system of care and support that serves their needs. For families, this allows them to make key decisions about who cares for their child, when and how.

How are they managed?

At the centre of your child or young person’s PHB is a support plan. This plan helps you to decide on the health and wellbeing goals of your child or young person. It sets out how your budget will be spent and how to lawfully, effectively and affordably to use the NHS money to meet your child’s or young person’s needs.

You will have support from your care coordinator to help you make these decisions and whether or not this is the right choice for your family. As well as how best to use the PHB to meet your child’s needs.

This is written in a support plan, which both you, your child your care coordinator and NHS Bromley CCG must sign.

What can I spend my child’s personal health budget on?

You can spend the budget on services which will help you to meet the health and wellbeing goals set out in your plan. For example:

  • Paying a carer employed either by you directly or from an agency
  • Paying for social or leisure activities for your child or young person to achieve their wellbeing goals

Personal health budgets are given in order to meet health and wellbeing needs, and cannot be used for any other reason.

Will it affect my benefits?

Personal health budgets are not a welfare benefit and are not a part of the benefits system. This means they are not taken into account when calculating your benefits entitlement.

NHS Bromley Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) has a duty to ensure that payments are being used for what has been agreed with your care co-ordinator and documented in your support plan. Bromley CCG is entitled to recover any money that is not spent appropriately.

What does this mean for me?

Children and young people who are eligible for children’s Continuing Care will have much more say over how their health and wellbeing needs are met.

If you are receiving direct payments through social services, you will be able to continue with this even if you become eligible for children’s Continuing care.

If you would like to find out more about having your personal health budget as a direct payment, or if you have any questions or comments on continuing healthcare or personal health budgets, please contact your care coordinator for more information:

Bromley Continuing Healthcare team

Tel: 0203 930 0150