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Special care

Special care services are targeted at people who, due to their mental health situation, need daily guidance, counselling, assistance, and supervision by a special care facilitator and who cannot be provided with the necessary assistance by other support measures of welfare services.

To whom?

Do you need support or help in your daily activities due to the specifics of your mental health or special needs? Do you find it difficult to get by in life because you can't socialize, go out, work and study in the same way as others? If so, special care services may be able to help you.

You have the right to receive special care services from the age of 18, if you live in Estonia, have a mental disorder and cannot be helped with other social welfare services. It is possible to receive special care services (11 services) in your own home or in the institutions - it depends on what and how much help you need. It is also important whether you need help only with activities or also with taking care of yourself. A consultant from the Social Insurance Board can help you find out whether the special care service is more suitable for you and which one might be the best for you.

How to receive?

In order to receive the services, it is necessary for a person or their guardian to first submit an application for a special care service: (Fill the application here) which can be completed and sent

For more detailed information and advice on special care services, please contact your service consultant.

Service consultants

After the referral decision has been issued, a person must start with the service no later than within

  • three days of the agreed term for the daily life support service, employment support service and assisted living service;
  • seven days of the agreed term for the community living service and 24-hour special care service.

If you want to change the social welfare institution after the referral decision has been issued, please submit an application to the service consultant. In case of a vacancy, the Estonian National Social Insurance Board will provide you with a new referral decision to the chosen service provider.

Queue of special care services

Unfortunately, there is not always a vacancy with the chosen service provider or sufficient funds in the state budget to refer a person to the service. In this case, we add the person to a queue and issue a queue notification.

Our queues are organised both by service and county. When submitting an application for a special care service, each person can indicate which county and service provider they prefer upon receipt of the service.

In addition to the division of services and counties, we maintain a regular and priority queue for special care services. The priority queue includes people

  • who are staying in a substitute home;
  • who are undergoing coercive or involuntary treatment;
  • who, on the basis of a court ruling, receive a 24-hour special care service or a closed child care institution service and need a special care service after termination of the said services;
  • who receive services through pilot projects;
  • whose service needs have changed;
  • whose special care service provision is terminated due to the premature termination of the service provider’s activity licence or contract.

Some services have long queues, as

  • there are significantly more people in need of the service than there are vacancies
  • a person has chosen a specific service provider who does not currently have a vacancy and they are not ready to choose another service provider  
  • a person wants to be in a queue in order to ensure that their place in the queue would be as favourable as possible if the need for the service arises

As a result, a person who has a less favourable place in the queue may access the service earlier if they need the service immediately and they are ready to accept the first vacancy offered by the Estonian National Social Insurance Board.

Information about the queues and service options can be obtained from a regional service consultant

View your place in the queue

A queue notification is a document by which a person is informed that there is no vacancy for the service they need or at the service provider they have chosen. Until a vacancy appears, the person remains in a queue

Own contribution

Own contribution is a fee paid by the service user to the service provider for expenses related to the accommodation and meals consumed during the service.

 Maximum own contribution:

  • The maximum own contribution of a person referred to a community living service is EUR 320 per month;
  • the maximum own contribution of a person referred to a 24-hour special care service is EUR 320 per month if the 24-hour special care service is provided to more than twelve persons at a time in a single or each separate building of the social welfare institution;
  • the maximum own contribution of a person referred to a 24-hour special care service is EUR 376 per month if the 24-hour special care service is provided to up to twelve persons at a time in a single or each separate building of the social welfare institution, or up to ten persons in separate family-like groups, but not more than 30 persons in a single building.

The maximum own contribution of persons referred to community living services and 24-hour special care services has been established by the 2023 State Budget Act.

Special care services

Special care services are targeted at people who, due to their mental health situation, need daily guidance, counselling, assistance, and supervision by a special care facilitator and who cannot be provided with the necessary assistance by other support measures of welfare services.

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Last updated: 21.05.2024

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