Choose how to meet your care and support needs
People have a range of needs but we believe how people choose to have these needs met should be based on individual choice.
Some may prefer to have the council arrange their support, whereas others would prefer to have control over how their care needs are met and by whom.
Direct payments are a way of enabling people who are eligible for a Personal Budget to buy the services and help they need, instead of the council arranging these.
This will enable you to have more independence, control and flexibility to choose how, when and from whom you would like your care and support to be provided.
You may choose to use a direct payment to arrange for:
- support from a care agency or other independent provider to help you live in your own home. You can choose which agency or provider you use
- support from a personal assistant (PA) that you choose yourself to help you live in your own home or to do different activities
- your personal care needs such as getting washed and dressed
- different ways of receiving replacement care and accessing the community
- a one off payment for something specific, for example a membership fee, enrolling on an adult education course, or to purchase items that will increase your independence.
What else can the payments be used for?
Some of our success stories have seen residents enjoy a more fulfilled quality of life by using their direct payments. We have not used our residents’ real names but have used their stories to illustrate how they chose to use their direct payments to help meet their care needs.
- Jonathan used his one off direct payment to purchase a washing machine which allowed the convenience of washing clothes at home instead of a carer taking clothes to the laundrette.
- Mr and Mrs Chowdhury purchased a sofa bed for a downstairs room as Mr Chowdhury was unable to manage the stairs anymore. This piece of equipment enabled them to sleep together at night and enabled Mrs Chowdhury to sleep properly without constantly worrying and getting up to look downstairs to check on her husband.
These two simple conveniences improved our residents’ lives and prevented the need for an ongoing care package.
- Other residents have opted to access activities in the community with their direct payment rather than go to a day centre where the location and opening times did not suit them.
- Direct payments are also being used by residents for replacement care/respite - sometimes outside the borough to be closer to other family members they don’t often get to see.
You can choose to have direct payments to manage all or just some of your support. If you only want a direct payment for part of your support, the council can arrange the rest.
The payments are not regarded as income by the Department of Works and Pensions. Any benefits you may be in receipt of will not be affected.
The council’s purchasing and personal budget team are able to provide support and guidance each step of the way.
We can also help you recruit and employ a personal assistant
- advertising the PA vacancy on the council’s webpage
- helping you to organise employment support services such as payroll
- giving you information about arranging employer’s liability insurance and DBS checks
- giving advice to help you arrange the relevant training for your PA.
To find out more about direct payments or personal assistants call adult social care services on 01753 475111 or email firstname.lastname@example.org and ask for a social care assessment.
If you or the person you are looking after already receives support from us but would prefer to change to direct payments please contact adult social care. We would be happy to provide you with more information about how you can do this.
As part of improving the service, we are interested in your views on why you are or are not in receipt of a direct payment. Please use the details above to give your feedback.