Devon County Council offers direct payments to people to enable them to be creative in how their care and support needs are met increasing choice and promoting independence.
Where it has been chosen to meet a person’s eligible needs using carers whose time is shared between everyone living in the same property (often called a shared hours offer), this part of the support plan must be commissioned by DCC
The shared hours offer is carefully devised by social workers to match compatible services users with a specific care agency in a specific property. It therefore becomes a condition of living at the property for each person to pay an equal share of the cost. As a result, it is not possible for the person with a direct payment to spend that money differently
With the appropriate oversight, shared hours arrangements ensure Personal Budgets remain sufficient to meet people’s needs in full. They also promote wellbeing by ensuring that the cared for person is supported to live and interact with their peers, which avoids the risk of social isolation.
Needs that are not appropriately met using shared hours of care (e.g. safely accessing the community) may still be met using a direct payment.
It is strongly recommended that Devon County Council take on the commissioning of the shared hours elements of the package. The individual hours for outcomes that will not be met by shred support can of course remain funded as a direct payment if you wish.
If you or your nominated or authorised person does not agree and continues to wish to have all the package supplied as a direct payment, please be aware that-
- A new request for a direct payment would not be offered however as you already have one and have already been using it for this purpose there is no intention to withdraw it.
- The personal budget will be set at the amount that considered sufficient to meet the needs were Devon County Council to commission the care directly, which will generally be their share of the shared hours offer plus any individual hours required to meet outcomes that cannot be met through the Shared Hours arrangement.
- It is strongly recommended that you have a signed contract with the provider of the shared hours offer that includes details of what will happen if you or another party in the shared hours offer leaves, or joins, the arrangement and if you have any concerns about the contract you should take independent legal advice.
- If, at any point, you wish to cease receiving a direct payment for the purposes of purchasing the shared hours offer, then please notify the Care Manager and DCC will seek to make alternative commissioned arrangement as soon as reasonably practicable.