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What can direct payments be used for?

Direct payments for replacement care

Direct payments are a flexible way in which replacement care arrangements can be provided.

Replacement care enables the carer to take a break from their caring role while ensuring the individual they are supporting remains safe and continues to have their care and support needs met.

Using your direct payment to access replacement care provides choice and control for the individual and their carer. Through the assessment and support planning process the support that the carer provides will be identified, and a plan established to consider when and how that carer may require a break, to continue to provide the consistent level of support to meet the individual’s needs.

Through a direct payment, replacement care can be provided within the individuals own home, through personal assistants or other care providers of their choice. This service allows flexibility and support arrangements to be planned around the individuals daily routine and needs.

Should the carer require a longer period of rest and the individual requires support at the night to ensure safety, replacement care in a specific care setting can be considered e.g. residential home. The length of stay can be flexible depending on which care setting is chosen and the frequency of how often this is required can be arranged in advance.

The budget for replacement care will be agreed based on the council’s current costs for residential and nursing placements this will then generate you budget. If the care setting you choose is more expensive than the allocated budget. then you have the option to ‘top-up’ the budget to choose your preferred care setting.

How flexible can the arrangements be?

The arrangements can be as flexible as possible if agreed in the support plan.

The break needs to meet the desired outcome of the carer, ensuring that the arrangements made will keep the individual 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 replacement care provision within a care setting. The financial assessment will also be reviewed as contributions differ between non-residential and residential services which will form the first part of your direct payment.

Who can I contact for more advice?

You can contact the Adult Contact Team on 01905 768053.

Direct Payment Support Service can help with a range of queries for example about what DP’s are, how funding can be spent including options such as employed PA, self-employed PA’s, microenterprises, the PA finder/matching service, domiciliary care, the costing of services, recruiting a PA, queries relating to employment law, contracts of employment, being a good employer, training, Managed (third party) Accounts, payroll advice, HMRC advice, insurance information (public liability and employers liability), pension and autoenrollment, national insurance and national living wage and national minimum wage and redundancy advice and calculations.