Means-tested social benefits upstream of social assistance are social benefits that belong to social assistance in the broader sense. According to the principle of subsidiarity they precede economic social assistance (social assistance in the narrow sense).
Means-tested social benefits upstream of social assistance comply with the principle of purpose - i.e. a need must be proven - and they are entirely or partially governed and funded by the cantons. Some means-tested social benefits upstream of social assistance are present in all cantons while others are restricted to certain cantons.
Consequently each canton has its own way of guaranteeing the subsistence of its inhabitants. The inventory of social assistance in a broader sense gives an overview of the support provided by each canton.