The level of care provided by both Social Services and the NHS will vary depending upon where you live. Whilst national frameworks are in place for assessing the care, it is left to each local authority and PCT to determine at what level on their respective frameworks they will provide care.
The boundaries between social care and NHS (continuing care) are very grey and again can vary by area, some Clients may be partially funded by both.
Social Care is currently means tested whereas NHS care is not. If the Client has over £23500 in liquid assets and disposables (very grey) they may still qualify for social funded care but will be fully fee paying. The fees they pay are set by each Council and bear no relation to the fees that the care agency charges the Council. In some cases it can be cheaper to contract direct with a private care agency, it will certainly provide more choices as social care will only provide support for basic tasks and activities that are deemed essential to maintain personal dignity, health, safety. This would cover support to get up, wash, dress, toileting, bathing & micro wave meals. The length of calls will invariably be the minimum required to complete the tasks.