FINANCE: NHS North Lancashire could be facing a liability for retrospective continuing care claims of as much as £14m, according to latest primary care trust cluster board papers.

Early last year, the Department of Health set a deadline of 30 September 2012 for anyone wishing to apply for retrospective NHS continuing care funding for care home costs incurred between 2004 and 2011.

According to PCT cluster NHS Lancashire’s latest finance report, NHS North Lancashire has received 620 such claims, and its potential liability is estimated at between £7m and £14m.

The report states that initial estimates of the potential costs to the cluster are “based on a relatively limited sample of claims”, and further work “is on-going to assess the validity of the claims”.

It adds: “Discussions are taking place with external audit on the methodology and basis of the provisions that will be required at 31 March 2013.”