Personal Health Budgets


What is a Personal Health Budget?

A Personal Health Budget (PHB) is an amount of money paid to an individual by the NHS to help them manage their care in a way that suits them.  Those eligible for a PHB will be able to use their budget to support their identified health and wellbeing needs, planned and agreed between them and their local NHS team.

At the centre of the PHB is a care plan. This sets out the agreed health and wellbeing outcomes that they want to achieve and how the budget will be spent to help the individual.

What is the aim of Personal Health Budgets?

The aim of a PHB is to give individuals more choice and control over the NHS money spent on meeting their health and wellbeing needs.

This means that individuals select treatments and services that meet their needs in a way that is most appropriate to them, different ways of managing their long term conditions.

The vision for PHBs is to enable people with long term conditions and disabilities to have greater choice, flexibility and control over the healthcare and support they receive.  PHBs are one way of helping people to be more involved in discussions and decisions about their care.

How are Personal Health Budgets managed?

Once a personal care plan has been agreed, the NHS money in a personal health budget can be managed in three different ways:

  • Direct payments: The money is transferred directly to the individual, and they buy the goods and services agreed in their care plan.
  • A notional budget: The NHS holds the money, and buys or provides the goods and services the individual has chosen.
  • A budget held by a third-party: An organisation legally independent of the individual and the NHS holds the money on their behalf, and buys or provides the goods and services chosen.

Who to talk to about getting a Personal Health Budget

Individuals should in the first instance, talk to their local NHS team who help them most often with their care - this might be a care manager, or a GP. They will be able to offer help and advice with personal health budgets.

Even if a personal health budget is not appropriate, they will be able to talk through other ways to make sure someone gets the healthcare and support they need.

Useful websites for Personal Health Budgets and Personalisation

To find out more about Personal Health Budgets          


Last updated: 27/08/2019