Specialist assessment and placements

The North Kent Specialist Assessment & Placements Team (SAPT) leads on the provision of care across a range of clinical areas on behalf of the three north Kent clinical commissioning groups. (The three north Kent clinical commissioning Groups are: Dartford, Gravesham and Swanley, Medway and Swale).

The team is responsible for ensuring timely high quality clinical assessment and placement services to meet the healthcare needs of eligible north Kent patients. The team works collaboratively with patients and their families, healthcare professionals, care providers, stakeholders and social services colleagues to ensure the delivery of care across the below clinical areas:

  • Continuing Healthcare for adults
  • Children’s Continuing Care
  • Specialist placements: mental health, transforming care, children and young people, neuro rehabilitation
  • Out of area mental health treatment.

Further information is given regarding each of these areas below.

Continuing Healthcare for adults

NHS Continuing Healthcare is the name given to a package of care which is arranged and funded solely by the NHS for individuals outside of hospital who have ongoing health care needs. You can receive NHS Continuing Healthcare in any setting, including your own home or in a care home. NHS Continuing Healthcare is free, unlike support provided by local authorities for which a financial charge may be made depending on your income and savings.

If you are found to be eligible for NHS Continuing Healthcare in your own home, this means that the NHS will pay for healthcare (e.g. services from a community nurse or specialist therapist) and associated social care needs (e.g. personal care and domestic tasks, help with bathing, dressing, food preparation and shopping). In a care home, the NHS also pays for your care home fees, including board and accommodation.

Further information can be found regarding Continuing Healthcare for Adults in the below leaflet or on the NHS website:

Patient leaflet

www.nhs.uk – NHS continuing healthcare

A short information film is also available via YouTube: NHS England Continuing Healthcare (CHC) film: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9xE2oGVRqvY


Children’s Continuing Care

Children’s Continuing Care is to support children and young people who have complex health needs and require care, advice and support that is not available from universal or specialist services. The National Framework for Children and Young People’s Continuing Care written by the Department of Health (see below) describes the process which is based upon multi agency comprehensive assessment which requires contributions from health, education and social care to reflect the complexity of caring for children and young people who still need to be able to access education and other community activities.

SAPT will host the multi-agency panels to consider the assessments and agree a package of care that will enable the child and young person to remain in a home environment working in partnership with health, social care and education.

National framework for Continuing Healthcare in England

Specialist placements: mental health, transforming care, children and young people, neuro rehabilitation

The SAPT team provides clinical assessment and placement services to meet the healthcare needs of patients requiring hospital / residential care.

Mental health

For patients requiring specialist hospital treatment services on either/both an inpatient or outpatient basis. The SAPT  team works closely within legal frameworks including the Mental Health ACT and Section 117 responsibilities for the provision of aftercare.

SAPT chair the Out of Area Treatment Panel on a monthly basis whose membership is made up of senior clinicians from Kent and Medway NHS Health and Social Care Partnership Trust. The panel’s role is to review the appropriateness of referrals and to ensure that all available locally commissioned services have been made available to patients.

The referral route is either through GP/primary care service or by secondary mental health providers.

As a minimum specialist mental health out of area placements requiring inpatient care are jointly reviewed including patients/advocates/care co-ordinators/clinicians and an appointed lead from within SAPT. These reviews are important to ensure that as patient’s need change, that they continue to be met and in the most appropriate care setting.

Transforming Care

The SAPT team is working in conjunction with NHS England and local care commissioners to ensure the best care for people with learning disabilities and/or autism. We aim to enable more people to live in the community, with the right support, ideally close to home.

As a part of the Transforming Care Programme, care and treatment reviews are now held for all people with learning disabilities and/or autism with mental health conditions or behaviour that challenges where consideration is being given to hospital admission.

These participative reviews have been developed to improve the care of people with learning disabilities and/or autism and with the aim of reducing hospital admissions and unnecessarily lengthy stays in hospitals.

Children and young people

Children and young people whose needs determine that they cannot live at home will be assessed through multi agency working including specialist teams who will already know the child/young person well. Supporting the family and young person to determine a correct placement is key and will be established through partnership working with social care and education.

Neuro rehabilitation

The neuro rehabilitation lead within the SAPT team reviews clinical recommendations from various treating teams in the acute trusts and the community in relation to the need for neuro rehab for people who have an acquired brain injury (examples include traumatic brain injury, hypoxic brain injury and recovery from neurosurgery).

This review process can include face-to-face assessment, attendance at meetings and review of medical notes and reports. Neuro rehabilitation is provided via NHS and independent sector institutions both locally and further afield depending on the type of specialist service required. Following an agreed period of rehabilitation the individual would have a multidisciplinary assessment to look at any ongoing care needs.

Personal Health Budgets

Personal Health Budgets

If you or a family member are eligible for care at home to be funded by the NHS your Nurse Assessor will discuss how this can be arranged and paid for giving you choice and control to personalise the care in a way that will work well for you.

NHS funded care at home is free for patients that meet certain criteria and we will discuss with you how the NHS funds will be used to meet your assessed needs and your agreed outcomes.

You will have the opportunity to discuss your options with a clinician and the Personal Health Budget Team and the following links give you information about how Personal Health Budgets work and how they will benefit you:

The NHS website

NHS England

Personal Health Budgets Network: PeopleHub

For more information on specialist placements please contact:

Specialist Assessments and Placements Team (North Kent CCGs)

1st Floor, Gravesham Civic Centre

Windmill Street, Gravesend, Kent DA12 1AU

Tel: 03000 424 999

Fax: 03000 424 966

Email: nkccg.placements@nhs.net