Free personal and nursing care, Scotland, 2016-17

Statistics release presenting client and expenditure figures for financial year 2016 to 2017 for free personal and nursing care (FPNC).

Executive summary

This Statistics Release presents the latest client and expenditure figures (financial year 2016-17) for Free Personal and Nursing Care (FPNC), which was introduced in Scotland in 2002. Prior to 1st July 2002, people could be charged for personal care services provided in their own home and some residents in Care Homes had to fully fund their care from their own income and savings.

This release presents information from a variety of sources to give a picture of:

  • the number of people that benefit from Free Personal Care and Free Nursing Care in Scotland
  • the amount that local authorities spend on personal care services


  • Since July 2002, people aged 65 and over can no longer be charged for personal care services provided in their own home
  • In 2016-17, 45,780 people aged 65+ received a personal care service in their own home
  • People receiving personal care at home, received an average of 8.8 hours per week of care in 2016-17
  • Local authorities spent £379 million on providing / purchasing personal care services for people living at home in 2016-17


  • In 2016-17, there were 30,670 long-stay residents in Care Homes in Scotland
  • Care Home residents aged 65 and over can receive £171 per week towards personal care (2016-17 rate)
  • 9,870 self-funding Care Home residents aged 65+ received Free Personal Care payments in 2016-17
  • Care Home residents of all ages can receive £78 per week towards nursing care (2016-17 rate)
  • 5,940 self-funding Care Home residents (all ages) received Free Nursing Care payments in 2016-17
  • Payments to self-funding Care Home residents cost local authorities £123 million in 2016-17


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