New arrangements for delivering home care in Leeds are being introduced as part of plans to improve the service used by around 2,500 people in the city.
The changes reflect a two year development process involving service users and their families, home care providers and care staff to design and implement the new options.
Councillor Lisa Mulherin, Leeds City Council executive member for health, adults and sport, said:
“I’m delighted that Leeds will be introducing new, better ways for delivering home care. We are investing extra money to ensure this works for the people who need to use our services and have made sure that their views now underpin the new system.
“Leeds faces plenty of challenges to how we deliver care in coming years as the population gets older and funding gets tighter. I look forward to seeing the new home care provision helping us meet those challenges and support people to live better lives.”
The council is writing to everyone who is affected by these changes and explaining their options when the new home care contracts come into place. This will mean people can decide to move to a new provider for their area from 1st June 2016 when the new contract starts. If that is what they want, they do not need to do anything other than let the council know that this is their decision.
Alternatively, as long as their current provider is still going to provide home care services in Leeds, they can choose to have a direct payment. This will mean the council would arrange to make a regular payment to them which they would use to pay the provider for their services.
Direct payments are also appreciated by people who want more control over the way they receive care and support, for instance allowing more choice of who provides support. Some people may want to use this method to meet their care needs in a way that better suits them, such as employing a personal assistant, and the council would support anyone wanting help to set this up.
Everyone the changes will affect will be able to raise concerns and queries through a dedicated phone number, email and correspondence address.
Cath Roff, director of adult social care for Leeds City Council, said:
“These changes are being made to make the quality of home care services across Leeds better and this is shown by the additional funding Leeds City Council is investing to make these improvements. I can reassure people that they will continue to receive the same level of service unless their needs have changed. If they have any questions about what the changes will mean for them, I encourage them to let us know and the letters we are sending them tell them how they can do this.”
Notes for editors:
Anyone wanting more help to discuss their options or let the council know their preferred option from 1st June 2016, can telephone 0113 3783924. They can also write to Leeds City Council, Adult Social Care, PO Box 848, Directorate, Leeds LS1 9PQ or email email@example.com.