Herefordshire Council encourage people to be more “creative” when choosing how to spend personal budgets (From Hereford Times)
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Herefordshire Council encourage people to be more “creative” when choosing how to spend personal budgets
3:01pm Friday 6th December 2013 in News
HEREFORDSHIRE Council says it wants to encourage people to be more “creative” when choosing how to spend their adult social care personal budgets.
Adult social care provision has changed significantly in the county and the local authority is claiming that people now have more choice than before on how they spend their allowances.
When someone contacts the council for help, their needs are assessed and – if they meet the criteria – they will be allocated a personal budget which they can use in a number of ways.
The council is now encouraging people to think about making creative choices to avoid social isolation by maintaining hobbies and interests which will allow them to continue to enjoy independent living.
Ruth Leak, self-directed support manager, said: “In the past, people have chosen to spend their personal budget on traditional services like home care, meals on wheels or day centres.
"But they could choose other options like maintaining hobbies and interests or participating in clubs or societies.
“They could also consider employing a personal assistant to manage this for them.
Ms Leak added: "Making choices like this helps people to have an active and happy social life and remain independent for longer.”
A national survey-based project called Making it Real aims to find out what local people’s experiences are of personal budgets.
And in Herefordshire, the results show that more can be done to improve the way personalisation benefits people.
Only 43 per cent of those asked said they were happy with having a personal budget and only 44 per cent felt they have advice available when they need it
A group of service users, carers’ representatives, and care organisations are now set to get together to look at how experiences of personal budgets can be improved.
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