Paying for dementia care and support in Northern Ireland

Read about the different ways to pay for care in Northern Ireland, and the amount you might be expected to pay.

Many people with dementia will need care and support from their carer, family, friends or professionals as their condition progresses.

All care – including any you pay for – should help you to live well with dementia. The types of care put in place will be different for everyone, because everyone’s needs are different. 

Paying for care can be worrying to think about. With the right information and support, you can better understand your options and make the right decisions for you. 

Who pays for dementia care in Northern Ireland? 

There are national rules about who has to pay for care and support, although these can vary locally. It mainly depends on the type of care and support that you need, where you live and what is available. 

Usually, Health and Social Care (HSC) trusts do not charge for services provided in your home, but there are some exceptions. Whether or not you have to pay depends on what services you need, and your income and assets (such as any savings or shares you have). 

If you are living in a care home, you might pay for all of your care and support costs, which means you are a ‘self-funder’. Or, you may make a contribution, with the HSC trust also contributing, or the HSC trust may pay the full cost. Again, this depends on your income and assets, and on your needs – see Care home fees

You may also be eligible to receive some financial support to help with nursing care – see Care home fees

Who should I ask for advice about paying for care in Northern Ireland?

People with dementia, carers and families can take control and make informed choices about care and support. However, paying for care can be complicated, and it’s best to speak to an adviser in your area. Ask for extra information and advice if you need it. For more information see Other resources.

HSC trusts don’t have to provide all the information and advice about paying for care themselves, but if they can’t, then they are expected to signpost (tell you about) or refer you to independent and impartial sources of information and advice. 

If you need independent financial advice so that you can make informed decisions, the HSC trust should help you to access it. You can ask for information and advice about understanding care charges, and ways to pay for them. 

Living in England or Wales?

This information is for people living in Northern Ireland, as the laws are different in England and Wales. Select from the options below for information about care costs where you live. 

England Wales
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