1948 National Assistance Act section 21 sets out local authorities' duty to provide residential care for people in need.

1977 NHS Act section 3 sets out the health secretary's duty to provide various services under the NHS, including nursing care.

1990 NHS and Community Care Act amended the National Assistance Act, extending social services' responsibility for ill and disabled people.

1995 HSG(95)8 - guidance from the health secretary on NHS obligations for meeting continuing care needs (following health service commissioner's report on Leeds case, 1995).