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Care Homes


NHS National Services Scotland ISD Scotland & NHS National Services Scotland

Care Home Census


The Scottish Care Home Census is collected on an annual basis and is intended to cover all adult care home establishments that are registered with the Care Inspectorate. The Care Inspectorate is responsible for regulating a wide range of social services and was established under the Regulation of Care (Scotland ) Act 2001.


Information gathered from the Scottish Care Home Census can be found under Publications.

Reports from census periods prior to March 2009 can be found via the links below:


This census was first issued by the Scottish Government in March 2003 and replaced two previous surveys. It combined the former 'Residential Care Home Census - R1' (run by the Scottish Government) and the 'Private Nursing Homes Census' (run by ISD Scotland).

The results from the Scottish Care Homes Census are used by the Scottish Government, Local Authorities, private and voluntary service providers, academics and members of the public to get a clear picture of Care Home provision across Scotland. The information is used to look at the scale of Care Home provision across the country and to plan for the future.

Prior to 2010, most census forms were printed and returned as paper forms. From 2010, the Care Inspectorate collected this information on behalf of the Scottish Government using their eforms system, though some Care Homes continued to return the survey electronically (using an Excel spreadsheet) direct to the Scottish Government.

In 2010 the Scottish Government asked ISD to take over the analysis of the Care Home Census as well as the annual publication.

The Care Inspectorate registers and inspects all care homes.

In August 2011 Information Services Division (ISD) sent out a feedback survey to all care homes for adults in Scotland. The survey looked at: ease of completing the Care Home Census, the usefulness of the guidance/FAQs, the time taken to complete the census, and any general comments. The findings from the survey are contained in this report Download PDF file [32kb].

A report on the uses of the Care Home Census information is also available in this report Download PDF file [27kb].

The following report outlines issues relating to the quality/reliability of the Scottish Care Home Census statistics: Quality reliability summary Download PDF file [24kb].


Care Home Census Data Supplier Guidance provides information on how care homes should complete the census return.

The Privacy Impact Assessment contains information around confidentiality and data protection.

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