Direct payments is a flexible way in which respite or replacement care arrangements can be delivered, offering options to purchase services most suitable for the carer and cared for.
Respite enables the carer to take a break from their caring arrangements and to support the main carer in their caring role.
How do direct payments work in respite?
The needs assessment identifies any replacement care that is required to enable the carer to look after their own wellbeing alongside the caring role, and to take a break from caring.
Depending on the assessment of needs the replacement care can be allocated to the person being cared for.
For replacement care delivered at home we would not expect this direct payment amount to exceed the usual cost of residential or nursing care costs.
Why use direct payments?
Many individuals and their carers find that accessing respite arrangements can prove disruptive and stressful and would rather seek an alternative:
- you can choose when to take your respite, as opposed to being restricted to the times that homes have availability
- you can choose to go out of the County if preferred
- you don't have to access a residential or nursing setting if you can find other specialised accommodation or arrangements
- you can remain at home and supplement existing arrangements and have respite or replacement care delivered in the home
How flexible can the arrangements be?
The arrangements can be as flexible as possible as long as the plan is agreed for the carer and the cared for.
The break needs to meet the desired outcome of the carer, ensuring that the arrangements made will keep the cared for safe and supported. The direct payment may also be used for alternative specialised accommodation arrangements but is not intended to pay for holiday accommodation and associated travel costs.
An adjustment will be made to regular direct payments during the period of residential respite or replacement care provision. In some exceptional circumstances additional amounts may be agreed e.g. continuation of Personal Assistant costs and when the replacement care requires the usual care to remain in place.
Who can I contact for more advice?
You can contact the Access, Triage and Intervention Service (ATIS) please call 01905 768053.
Offer advice, guidance and practical solutions to enable people with disabilities and older people to live independently in their own homes, to achieve their goals in life and to help them play an active part in their community. For more help with personal budgets and direct payments visit the Penderels Trust website (opens in a new window).