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FPNC - Latest Data (updated July 2018)

The latest data on Free Personal & Nursing Care was published on 06 August 2019. There is also an additional spreadsheet containing a Local Authority breakdown for the most recent data.

Publication: Free Personal & Nursing Care 2017-18 (PDF and Spreadsheets)


When Free Personal Care was introduced in Scotland on 1 July 2002,  the Department for Work & Pensions considered Free Personal Care payments to be financial help from a local authority to an individual for the cost of a care home and as such withdrew Attendance Allowance for self-funders in residential care. The Scottish Government has compensated for the loss of Attendance Allowance to ensure residents did not lose out and this is included in the cost of Free Personal Care payments.

The following paper estimates the cost to the Scottish Government for compensating for the loss of Attendance Allowance;

Free Personal Care and Attendance Allowance

This data will be updated in August 2020 and included in the next Free Personal and Nursing Care publication. 


FPNC - Background

Free Personal & Nursing Care

Free Personal and Nursing Care (FPNC) was introduced in Scotland on 1 July 2002. Prior to 1 July 2002, people could be charged for personal care services provided in their own home and many residents in Care Homes had to fully fund their care from their own income and savings.

Care at home:

  • people aged 65 and over can no longer be charged for personal care services provided in their own home. They can however be charged for domestic services such as help with shopping or housework but any charge would be subject to a financial assessment.

Care Homes:

  • people aged 65 or over who live in care homes and are assessed as self-funders can receive a weekly payment towards their personal care.
  • people of all ages who live in care homes and are assessed as self-funders can receive a further payment if they require nursing care.
  • the remainder of the care homes fees - the 'hotel' costs - they still fund themselves.

More detailed information on the policy is available from : http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Topics/Health/Support-Social-Care/Support/Older-People/Free-Personal-Nursing-Care

The information available below is from a variety of sources to give a picture of:

  • the number of people benefiting from free personal care and free nursing care in Scotland, and
  • how much Local Authorities spend on personal care services.

Please note that the previously published time series for expenditure on free personal and nursing care payments for the years 2003-04 to 2008-09, has been revised following extensive work to ensure that all figures include overheads. Full details are given in the background notes within the excel spreadsheet.

Historic Publications

The statistical releases on Free Personal & Nursing Care are listed in the table below by year of publication. Each of the publications present national figures for FPNC for a financial year.

Year Published


2016/17 July 2018 https://www.gov.scot/publications/free-personal-nursing-care-scotland-2016-17/ 
2015/16 August 2017 https://www.gov.scot/Publications/2017/08/1520​ 
2014/15 April 2016 http://www.gov.scot/Publications/2016/04/1769
2013/14 April 2015 http://www.gov.scot/Publications/2015/04/5430
2012/13 April 2014 http://scotland.gov.uk/Publications/2014/04/2946
2011/12 July 2013


2010/11 August 2012 http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Publications/2012/08/4156
2009/10 August 2011 http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Publications/2011/08/30153211/0
2008/09 July 2010 http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Publications/2010/07/01130955/0
2007/08 November 2009 http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Publications/2009/11/23134324/0
2006/07 August 2008 http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Publications/2008/08/25160542/0
2005/06 June 2007 http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Publications/2007/06/22152540/0
2004/05 March 2006 http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Publications/2006/03/27130345/0
2002/04 September 2004 http://www.scotland.gov.uk/Publications/2004/09/19976/43547

The paper below estimates how much councils spent on personal care at home prior to the introduction of the FPNC policy: