5. Background information on the collection of the data
5.1 Data Sources
A variety of different data sources were used to compile this Statistics Release, as detailed below:
Community Care Monthly key monitoring return
Between 2002 and 2005 the Scottish Executive collected monthly information from Local Authorities regarding the number of residents supported in Care Homes. From 2006, this information was collected quarterly in the community care quarterly key monitoring return. This data is summarised in Annex 1.
Community Care Quarterly key monitoring return
Since July 2002, the Scottish Executive has collected quarterly information on the number of people receiving personal care services at home and the number of self-funders receiving free personal care and free nursing care payments. The numbers represent only those people receiving FPC and FNC under the Community Care and Health (Scotland) Act 2002.
For Care Homes, this provides a count of those people who are self-funders and are assessed as requiring free personal care and/or free nursing care.
For care at home the figures show all people receiving personal care services at home. Many of these people would have received their personal care for free prior to the introduction of the Community Care and Health (Scotland) Act 2002, but prior to July 2002 this was dependent on local policy and the client’s financial status. It is estimated that Local Authorities spent at least £64.5 million in 2001-02 on providing personal care services. Full details available from:
The results of the quarterly survey are available at:
A copy of the survey form and notes for guidance is available at:
Please note that this data collection has changed to an annual data collection, for 2012/13 onwards.
Free Personal and nursing care expenditure survey
The Scottish Executive carried out a separate survey asking about expenditure on free personal and nursing care for 2002-03 and 2003-04. From 2004-05 onwards this data has been collected through the Local Financial Return (LFR3).
For Care Homes, the numbers represent spend on self-funding residents in Care Homes who receive FPC and FNC under the Community Care and Health (Scotland) Act 2002. It should be noted that Care Home residents who are supported under the National Assistance regulations also receive personal and nursing care for free but these costs are not considered here.
For care at home, the numbers represent all spend on personal care services provided to people in their own homes.
Copies of all Community Care Surveys are available from the website at:
Home care services census
Information on home care services has been collected by the Scottish Executive since the 1980's by means of an annual census. The census covers all home care services provided or purchased by Scottish Local Authorities.
An aggregated table return for the home care statistical collection was introduced in 1998, called the H1. Local authorities were asked to provide details of all home care services provided by their own staff, and in addition, services bought in from other local authorities, and private / voluntary organisations. Information on client age, level and type of service was introduced to the collection in 2005.
The information collected in the home care census has been reviewed by the Home Care review group. A revised home care statistical collection was introduced in March 2010 which collects information on an individual basis for each home care client receiving home help services, meals services and community alarm / telecare services. Further information is available from: http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Topics/Statistics/Browse/Health/Data/HomeCare. It is planned that this will be the only source for all home care data used within this publication.
Local Financial Return (LFR3)
The Local Financial Return collects expenditure statistics for each local authority in Scotland. The LFR3 collects all expenditure and income relating to social work services. From 2004-05, questions relating to expenditure on free personal care were added to the LFR3 return. Further information is available from: http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Topics/Statistics/Browse/Local-Government-Finance
Each year, data validation work is conducted on each of these sources before the official publication of the Free Personal and Nursing Care statistics. As part of the 2010-11 validation process, each Local Authority was sent a spreadsheet summarising their statistics and flagging up any anomalies. A copy of this spreadsheet can be found on our website at: http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Topics/Statistics/Browse/Health/FPNC
5.2 Understanding the Statistics in this Report.
All information in this Statistics Release is presented for the financial year 1st April to 31st March.
The Free Personal Care policy began on the 1st July 2002, part way through the financial year 2002-03. We have excluded figures for 2002-03, from this Statistics Release as the data is not for a full year and therefore can be confusing when trying to make comparisons with full years. Also the data for 2002-03 is less robust as Local Authorities were just beginning to get IT systems in place to monitor this information.
In general, care should be taken when comparing the data on ‘numbers’ of people receiving free personal care and ‘expenditure’ on free personal care. The number of people receiving FPC and FNC payments is collected at the end of the quarter and represents the number of people receiving payments on the last day of the quarter. These four quarters are averaged to produce the yearly total.
Due to the large number of admissions and discharges throughout the year, these averages do not necessarily represent the number of people receiving FPC for the full 52 weeks of the year. In the year to March 2008, there were 12,400 long-stay admissions to care homes for older people in Scotland. This represents 240 long-stay admissions every week. It should be noted that these figures only provide a snapshot of the number of people receiving payments at the end of the quarter rather than a precise count of throughput.
Care at Home
As with the care homes data, the quarterly data for FPC at home provides a snapshot at the end of each quarter which has been averaged to provide an annual figure. This will not compare directly with the expenditure data which takes into account fluctuations within each quarter.
5.3 Limitations of the Data
For the following Local Authorities:
- Clackmannanshire (2005-06 to 2007-08)
- East Lothian (2004-05 to 2010-11)
- Fife (2009-10)
- Glasgow City (2004-05 & 2010-11)
- Inverclyde (2003-04)
- Midlothian (2005-06 to 2006-07)
- North Ayrshire (2007-08 & 2009-10)
- Shetland Islands (2008-09 to 2010-11)
- South Ayrshire (2005-06 to 2010-11)
- West Dunbartonshire (2003-04 to 2010-11)
- West Lothian (2003-04)
it appears that gross expenditure on personal care services at home is higher than overall net expenditure on home care services. This can happen for a number of reasons:
- Where resource transfer from Health Boards has been included as income against home care services for older people.
- Where supporting people grant has been included as income against home care services for older people.
- Where the personal care expenditure includes overheads but the home care expenditure returned in the LFR3 did not include an allocation of overheads.
Many Local Authorities have seen a rise in personal care at home costs from 2006-07. The reasons for this are not just increased demand but also:
- Shift in the balance of care, away from care homes towards more care at home.
- Introduction of equal pay provision resulting in higher wage costs.
- Providing refunds to clients for meal preparation where this was previously charged for.
5.4 Changes to the data
During the data validation process, a number of Local Authorities identified errors within data returns which has resulted in previously published figures being revised, full details below. This also means that figures will differ from those within source publications.
Aberdeenshire Local Authority
Care at Home figures – It was identified during the data validation that the reported number of FPC at home client for 2010-11 was greater than the total number of reported care at home clients. These figures are taken from two separate sources, the home care census (snapshot end of March) and an average of a quarterly snapshot from the Community Care Quarterly key monitoring return which has caused this problem. This will be resolved in future publications by sourcing this data solely from the home care census.
East Ayrshire Local Authority
Care at Home figures - Revised figures provided for 2010-11 for the number of clients aged 65+ receiving FPC at home. New figures based on last quarter of 2010-11 only.
East Dunbartonshire Local Authority
Care Home figures – Revised FPNC client numbers for 2009-10 and 2010-11. Revised figures provided for 2004-05, 2005-06 & 2006-07 for LFR expenditure figures for FPNC.
Care at Home figures - Revised figures provided for 2004-05, 2005-06 & 2006-07 for FPC expenditure.
East Lothian Local Authority
Care Home figures - Revised figures provided for 2004-05, 2005-06 & 2006-07 for LFR expenditure figures for FPNC.
Care at Home figures - Revised figures provided for 2004-05, 2005-06 & 2006-07 for FPC expenditure.
East Renfrewshire Local Authority
Care Home figures - Revised figures provided for 2004-05 to 2009-10 for net expenditure on Care Home for older people.
Edinburgh Local Authority
Care at Home figures - Revised figures provided for the number of FPC hours received by clients aged 65+ at home in 2010-11.
Orkney Islands Local Authority
Care at Home figures - Revised figures provided for 2010-11 for the number of clients aged 65+ receiving FPC at home and the number of home care clients. Identified an error within their data collection that means that a home care supplier not being included with their returns. Further investigation required which could impact the figures further.
Perth & Kinross Local Authority
Care at Home figures - Revised figures provided for the of FPC hours received by clients aged 65+ at home in 2009-10.
South Lanarkshire Local Authority
Care Home figures – Revised FPNC client figures from 2010-11.
West Lothian Local Authority
Care Home figures – Revised FPNC client figures from 2009-10.
The CIPFA Best Value Accounting Code of Practice (BVACOP), Requires the inclusion of overheads within expenditure. For both Care Homes and Care at Home expenditure, since 2006/07 the LFR3 has required Local Authorities to include overheads in line with the BVACOP.
Due to the identification that overheads were not being included consistently within expenditure figures by Local Authorities. In the 2011 publication a revised time series for expenditure on free personal and nursing care payments for the years 2003-04 to 2008-09 was published, after extensive work to ensure that all figures included overheads.
In both the 2009-10 & 2010-11 validation exercises each Local Authority was asked to confirm if there expenditure figures firstly contained overhead figures and then to either detail the amount included or to provide an estimate of the amount that should be included. A number of Local Authorities couldn’t provide overhead figures for the 2010-11 validation exercise, therefore for these Authorities overhead figures have been estimated, details have been provided below.
- East Lothian – Care home and care at home expenditure
- Renfrewshire - Care home and care at home expenditure
- Scottish Borders – Care home and care at home expenditure
- Shetland Islands - Care at home expenditure
5.5 Cost of respondent burden
To calculate the cost of respondent burden to this survey each Local Authority was asked to provide an estimate of the time taken in hours to extract the requested information and complete the survey form. The average time from 13 Local Authorities has then been used within the calculation below to calculate that the total cost of responding to this survey is £1,774.
5.6 Further information
Further details and analysis of the data presented in this Statistics Release are available on request from the address given below. The Statistics Release is available on the Internet by accessing the Scottish Executive web site: –
Information at local authority level is shown in the annex to this Statistics Release.
Community Care Statistics
St Andrews House
Contact: Steven Gillespie
Tel: 0131 244 3777
This statistics release was published on 28th August 2012.