From April 2015, care and support in England is changing. The Care Act will help to make care and support more consistent across the country.
Care and support
‘Care and support’ is the term used to describe the help some adults need to live as well as possible with any illness or disability they may have. It can include help with things like getting out of bed, washing, dressing, getting to work, cooking meals, eating, seeing friends, caring for families and being part of the community.
It might also include emotional support at a time of difficulty and stress, helping people who are caring for an adult family member or friend or even giving others a lift to a social event.
Care and support includes the help given by family and friends, as well as any provided by the council or other organisations.
Many of us will need care and support at some point in our lives and most people will pay at least something towards the cost of their care. The new national changes are designed to help you plan for the future and put you more in control of the help you receive. Any decisions about your care and support will consider your wellbeing and what is important to you and your family, so you can stay healthy and remain independent for longer.
You could benefit from the changes if you:
- receive care and support
- support someone as a carer
- are planning for future care and support
What is changing?
In April 2015, the Government will be introducing:
- A new national level of care and support needs to make care and support more consistent across the country
- New rights of support for carers that closely match what we already offer in Bedford Borough
- Deferred payment agreements for care costs - this is already available in Bedford Borough
More changes to the way people pay for care and support will be introduced in 2016. These will protect people with the highest needs from facing unlimited costs, and provide more financial support to people with modest means.
- A lifetime cap on care costs
- Extended financial support
Support for carers
In England, millions of people provide unpaid care or support to an adult family member or friend, either in their own home or somewhere else.
‘Caring’ for someone covers lots of different things, like helping with their washing, dressing or eating, taking them to regular appointments or keeping them company when they feel lonely or anxious.
Visit our carers web page for information on what is available in Bedford Borough.
Needs and eligibility
From April 2015, the way care and support needs are assessed in England is changing, meaning that decisions made about the help you receive will consider your wellbeing and what is important to you and your family.
For the first time, there will be a national level of care and support needs that all councils will consider when we assess what help we can give to you. This may result in you being eligible for care and support, and will make it easier for you to plan for the future.
Whatever your level of need, we will be able to put you in touch with the right organisation to support your wellbeing and help you remain independent for longer.
Deferred Payment Agreements
From April 2015 deferred payment agreements will be available across England.
This means that people should not have to sell their homes to pay for care, as they have sometimes had to do in the past.
A deferred payment agreement is an arrangement with the council that will enable some people to use the value of their homes to pay for their care. If you are eligible, we will help to pay the care home bills on your behalf. You can delay repaying us until you choose to sell your home, or until after your death.
Bedford Borough Council already offers a Deferred Payment Scheme, for more information download our factsheet here (PDF).