Adult Social Care Charging and Financial Assessment Review

Closed 13 Mar 2017

Opened 13 Dec 2016

Results Updated 23 Mar 2017

ACE Committee have agreed to 10 changes to the Adult Care charging policy for 2017/18:

  1. Removing allowance & disregards from the Financial Assessment –
  • Disregard of the first £20 from borders & lodgers removed.
  • Life Insurance and Buildings & Contents Insurance now considered as part of everyday living costs covered in the Minimum Income Guarantee.
  • The ‘better off’ assessment for couples will no longer be offered. An affordability check will make sure a couple’s combined financial situation is not below minimum income levels.
  • For those receiving AA, DLA or PIP, a standard £5 disability related expense will be applied unless a full disability related expense assessment is requested.
  1. Ongoing costs of Assistive Technology & Telecare to be included in Personal Budgets, which are subject to a financial assessment of someone’s ability to contribute towards their care.
  2. The Standard Minimal Charge for respite breaks/short stays in registered care homes is being removed. Users of these services will be charged subject to a financial assessment of their ability to pay.
  3. Meals & refreshments provided at Council day centres will be charged for separately at a rate of £5 per day. The day centre day rate will be reduced to exclude the cost of meals & refreshments.
  4. Client charges will be backdated to when the care service began, unless consideration of a significant delay to the Financial Assessment is needed.
  5. Revised fees for Deferred Payments & Interim Funding:
  • Legal fees for a basic Deferred Payment Agreement (DPA) - £400
  • DPA admin fee - £135
  • DPA & Interim Funding annual admin fee - £225
  1. Revised fees for Self-Funders:
  • Set up fee - £250
  • Ongoing annual fee - £200
  1. Wording added to the Policy to clarify how charges for support will be calculated & reconciled.
  2. An increase in the charge for service from the Community Reablement Team after the service user’s goals have been met to £37.55 per hour.
  3. Continuation of our current provision of Independent Financial Information & Advice.

These changes will come into effect from 1st April 2017.

Please refer to the final consultation report and equality impact assessment documentation linked to this page for further information.

Files:

Overview

The Council is facing extreme financial pressures on all our budgets. As a result we are being forced to make some very tough decisions about the services we provide, including Adult Social Care Services.

We already have made significant savings in adult social care by changing the way we work, making use of technology and equipment and renegotiating contracts with care providers.

We are continuing to look at every opportunity to reduce costs and make our services more cost effective while still making sure our most vulnerable residents are supported. 

We are now looking at ways of maximising our income and are proposing some changes to our Charging and Financial Assessment Framework to maximise the contributions we receive towards the cost of the care and support services we fund.

Our aim is to avoid the risk of having to close some services through lack of funds.

Why We Are Consulting

Although some social care services are provided free (like assessments, support planning, information and advice, reablement services and community equipment) people with eligible care and support needs are asked to pay something towards the social care services they receive in the community, based on how much they can afford.

We offer a Financial Assessment (or means test) which ensures that:

  • people on low incomes do not need to pay anything towards their care and support
  • no one is asked to pay more than their financial assessment shows they can afford
  • no one will ever be left with income below the Minimum Income Guarantee
  • people with savings above £23,250 are expected to meet the full cost of their care

People who refuse a financial assessment are expected to pay the full cost of their care

Although most of the rules around financial assessments and charging for social care are set nationally, there are some areas where we can make local decisions.

In Reading, we have always used our local discretions to benefit our residents but this is no longer something we can afford. The changes we are proposing will help ensure that social care services are sustainable going forward.

This consultation sets out each of the changes we are planning to make to our charging policy and their likely impact.

Please contact us:

  • If you have any queries
  • You would like to receive a hard copy of the consultation questionnaire
  • You require additional support to understand or complete the questionnaire

If you prefer you can write to us to let us know your comments:

Wellbeing Team, Level 2, Civic Centre, Reading RG1 2LU

 

Areas

  • All Areas

Audiences

  • Anyone from any background