Councillors to discuss care changes in Lincolnshire

Lincolnshire County Council offices in Lincoln. Photo: Rob Foulkes EMN-150915-141806001
Lincolnshire County Council offices in Lincoln. Photo: Rob Foulkes EMN-150915-141806001
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County councillors are due to review the results of a consultation about proposed changes to how adults contribute towards their care.

Lincolnshire County Council asked people’s views on changes to the non-residential contributions policy from June to September. The council’s adults scrutiny committee will be asked to comment on a report on Wednesday.

The proposed changes were:

○ Making it clearer what happens to contributions from service users when care is cancelled.

○ Making the date that contributions start the same for everyone.

○ Simplifying disability expenses to make sure that people with similar needs receive similar payments by awarding them on a banded level for new customers.

○ Financially assessing contributions against the full cost of care, and removing the weekly maximum charge for non-residential care and support services.

○ Charge a flat fee for arranging a care package for self-funders where they request the council to do so.

Executive member for adult care Patricia Bradwell (Con) said: “If the proposals were introduced around 4,500 people on the lowest incomes would not see any changes to their contributions. People will continue to be financially assessed before they are asked to contribute towards their care.

“I want to reassure people that regardless of any proposed changes, if you are assessed as not having the finances to pay for your care, you will not be asked to do so.”

Director of adult social services Glen Garrod added: “We needed to review the policy to make the policy clearer and bring it closer to new national guidelines. The council has made £120m savings from its annual budget since 2011, and will need to find £120m of further efficiencies by the end of the decade. So we also need to explore opportunities to generate income to make Adult Care services sustainable, under growing demand and financial pressure.

“There has been a lot of agreement with the proposed changes. People are particularly in favour of the proposal to introduce a notice period for cancelling care and making contributions start at the same time for everyone. We reviewed the consultation responses thoroughly and have considered revisions to the proposals in light of the public feedback.”

Officers will recommend final proposals to executive councillors on November 3 for a decision. Any changes will be implemented in April.