Direct Payments/Personal Budget?

Hi all,

Not sure if this is the right place to ask, but I thought it was worth a shot.

The relative I care for has had an increase in their needs recently due to their condition deteriorating and has thankfully become eligible for care funding, which means I’ll be able to finally get a break to one degree or another. They’re going to be having an assessment soon and I’ve written down a bunch of stuff that they get day to day help with but I’d ideally like to focus on what the local authority will actually pay to provide support for…can anyone give me a breakdown of exactly what kind of tasks they’ll take into consideration?

For example, due to cognitive troubles my relative needs a lot of help with handling their personal business. Such as making phone calls on their behalf, writing letters/email correspondence, managing their regular household bills and what not. It can take up a lot of time but there’s no way they’d be able to manage without assistance.

Does anyone know if cleaning the house/laundry is covered or doing shopping? As all that kind of stuff takes up a lot of time outside of direct one-on-one caring too. Do they take cooking/meal prep into consideration too?

I’m sure there are several elements of care my relative gets but I haven’t considered, so any help with ideas for what would illustrate their needs in full would be a huge help.

Thanks all.

Hi Lea.

Sounds like a Needs Assessment … please correct me if I’m wrong ?

Getting a social care needs assessment - NHS


Getting a needs assessment
If you think you, or someone you know, needs help to cope day-to-day, the first step is to get a needs assessment from your local council.

You’ll need to have this assessment before the council can recommend a service such as:

equipment like a walking frame or personal alarm.
changes to your home such as a walk-in shower.
practical help from a paid carer.
day care for your child if either you or they are disabled.
access to day centres and lunch clubs.
moving to a care home.

The needs assessment is free and anyone can ask for one.

How to get a needs assessment

Contact social services at your local council and ask for a needs assessment. You can call them or do it online.

Someone from the council such as a social worker or occupational therapist will ask you how you’re managing everyday tasks like washing, dressing and cooking.

They might ask you to describe how well you do certain things like making a cup of tea and getting out of a chair.

If it seems you may need some alterations in and around your home such as grab rails in the bathroom, you might also be referred for a separate assessment of your home.

The needs assessment can happen :

over the phone.

Assessments usually last at least an hour.

How to prepare for your assessment
This is your chance to have your say.

Give as much detail as you can about all the everyday tasks you struggle with, even the little ones like turning taps on and off. Leaving out things might reduce the care recommended for you.

Which? Later Life Care has a checklist of typical questions you might be asked in the assessment regardless of your age.

Have someone with you

Have a friend or relative with you, if possible. It will help if you’re not confident explaining your situation. They can also take notes for you.

If you can’t have a friend or relative with you, you could use an advocate. Advocates are people who speak up on your behalf. They can help you fill in forms and sit with you in meetings and assessments. They’re often free. Find an advocate in your area.
Telephone help

If you want to talk to someone over the phone about needs assessments, call :

your local council’s social services department
Age UK’s free helpline on 0800 055 6112
Independent Age’s free helpline on 0800 319 6789
The Family Rights Group’s free helpline on 0808 801 0366

Getting the results

You’ll get the results of the assessment, usually within a week.

It identifies what kind of care and support would help you, such as a paid carer or meals delivered to your home (meals on wheels).
Paying for care

You’ll generally be expected to pay toward the cost of social care.

If the assessment identifies you need help, you will have a financial assessment (means test) to see if the council will pay towards it. This will be arranged for you.

What if I’m told I don’t need care ?

If the needs assessment finds that you don’t qualify for care and support, the council should still give you free advice about where you can get help in your community. Ask if this doesn’t happen.

How to complain about a needs assessment

If you disagree with the results of your needs assessment or how it was done, you have a right to complain.

First complain to your local council. Your council should have a formal complaints procedure on its website. It should also tell you about it at your assessment.

If you’re not happy with the way the council handles your complaint, you can take it to the local government and social care ombudsman. An ombudsman is an independent person who’s been appointed to look into complaints about organisations.

That’s the " Book " for you … a real post code lottery in delivery and in time between requesting one and the actual assessment.

Direct payments ?

Fine … expect if the caree pays the carer with them … a VERY grey area :

Be well aware !!!

Definitely time for a new Needs Assessment for your relative, and Carers Assessment for you, from Social Services. Make sure you each get WRITTEN copies, which should include a personal budget. If not, they haven’t done it properly!
As far as finances are concerned, does anyone have Power of Attorney?