Adult social care providers

Providers are recommended to regularly review these pages.

In this section:

Market sustainability and fair cost of care

On 16 December 2021, the government announced the Market Sustainability and Fair Cost of Care Fund. The purpose of the fund is to support councils to move towards paying providers a fair cost of care and to prepare their local markets for the adult social care reform, such as the introduction of the £86,000 cap on care costs. The care cap takes effect from October 2023 and will mean that no one in England will have to pay more than this sum towards meeting their care costs in their lifetime.

Fair cost of care exercise

Hillingdon Council are required to complete a fair cost of care exercise, so that we can:

  • arrive at a shared understanding with providers of the local cost of providing care
  • see how far away, on average, providers' current rates are from the fair cost of care
  • to create and publish a market sustainability plan, which details how we plan to move towards a fair cost of care (where this is not already being paid).

Please note: For the purposes of the exercise, the Department of Health and Social Care (DHSC) consider 'fair' to mean the median actual operating costs for providing care in the local area (following completion of the exercise). 'Fair' also means what is sustainable for the local market. This is, on average, what Councils are required to move towards paying providers.

Our ambition is for as many providers to engage in this exercise as possible. This is your opportunity to put across the actual costs of delivering care in Hillingdon. We would encourage any provider, regardless of whether they contract with the council, or not, to participate in the exercise.

The 65+ care services involved in this exercise are:

  • standard residential care
  • residential care for enhanced needs
  • standard nursing care
  • nursing care for enhanced needs

This exercise and the funds being made available to councils are designed to support:

  • preparation by councils of their markets for reform, including the further commencement of Section 18(3) of the Care Act 2014 in October 2023
  • councils moving towards paying provides a fair cost of care.


You will have seen communications in recent weeks from Councils regarding the Fair Cost of Care exercise for Care Homes, which forms an integral part of the Governments Reforms of Adult Social Care. To assist you, the Care Provider Alliance, would like to ensure that we have a full representation of small, medium, and larger sized organisations participating in the Fair Cost of Care data collection exercise, and encourage you to participate. Why?

This is a once in a lifetime opportunity for care providers to influence how social care services are to be funded. By submitting your data via the data collection tool, the Council will be able to submit a Cost of Care Report to DHSC reflecting the cost of care, to release additional funding from government along with a Market Sustainability Plans informing how fees will be reviewed and inflated from 2023/4.

The reports will include the details from your submissions around the cost of care delivery, all data submitted will be handled sensitively by councils to run this exercise. It is a requirement that outliers or unusual data are to be verified and validated to gain a full understanding of cost pressures and reported in the Cost of Care Report submitted to the DHSC.

The council, along with the member associations, are here to support you in making your submission. This is a chance to be heard unlike no other exercise conducted on this scale previously, and we all encourage you to participate, and to take advantage of the support offered. Without your participation, the likelihood of additional funding is significantly reduced.

We trust you will engage in the process and take advantage of the support offered. We are hosting an online session of the national tools and hosting an FAQ to answer any questions you may have. See below for links to join the meeting.

Confidential support and guidance can be provided at FCC.

Further support and guidance can also be found here:

Home Care

 Care Homes

Fair Cost of Care Support for Care home and Home Care Providers for CASCADE

The Care Provider Alliance (CPA) has been tasked by the DHSC to support providers of Care Homes and Home Care to participate in the Fair Cost of Care exercise nationally.

The CPA have been running dedicated workshops for Councils to invite their providers to see national tool demos (iESE Care Cubed for Care Homes and the LGA Toolkit for Home Care) and to answer FAQs.  Feedback received from Councils has acknowledged the successes of these sessions driving engagement by providers. 

Given the success, we are close to exhausting available capacity to support further dedicated demos and FAQ sessions, and as such wanted to offer the below national sessions which any authority can invite provides to join.  I have also attached a generic letter you can adapt inviting providers to these sessions.

Domiciliary care

The process for domiciliary care has already begun following release of the LGA Domiciliary Care ToolKit and we encourage all providers to read through the guidance and seek support from the council - contact email below.

Domiciliary care providers should complete and return the toolkit by Sunday 26 June.

Important: Please ensure your submission is based on 2022/23 (actual) costs; please do not base your submission on desired or future costs.

Visit the ARCC website for resources, guidance and support to model the cost of homecare services.

Care homes

The iESE Fair Cost of Care tool for care homes is now live and available to download and use for free. The tool is based on the CareCubed platform (formerly Care Fund Calculator) already available.

The completion of this tool is a significant step in determining what is a 'fair' local cost of care and assisting us in understanding what is required to work towards this. All care homes are, therefore, strongly encouraged to participate and complete the tool for their home by Sunday 26 June.

For a range of helpful documents and videos to get you started in the fair cost of care tool, use the Fair Cost of Care Awareness Pack For Care Providers

Please note: The iESE tool will be the only tool Hillingdon Council will be using to complete the Fair Cost of Care exercise.

Log into iESE

Answers to questions

The LGA have put together responses to the most common questions received from local authorities, care providers and partners; please use this link which shows these questions and responses and aims to support those involved in Fair Cost of Care Fund exercises to work together to obtain a robust picture of local costs of care and meet the Department of Health and Social Care grant conditions.

Market Sustainability Plan

The council was required to publish the final  Market Sustainability Plan (MSP) (PDF) [385KB] by Monday 27 March 2023 and submit a copy to the Department of Health and Social Care .

The first section of the MSP assesses the current sustainability of local care markets; the second section assesses the impact of future market changes between now and October 2025 (given that charging reform is no longer planned for October 2023); and the final section details plans to address the sustainability issues identified.

Help and support

Page last updated: 17 Jul 2023