The Care Act
What is the Care Act?
In April 2015 the Care Act 2014 came into place, strengthening the rights and recognition of carers and giving them a clearer entitlement to an assessment of need.
The Care Act introduced a ‘Whole Family Approach’ looking at the impact of a person’s needs on family members. Provisions for young carers under the Care Act 2014 link with those in the Children and Families Act 2014. The rights of parent carers have also been strengthened under an amendment to the Children Act 1989.
The Act introduced new rules about working with young carers, or adult carers of disabled children, to plan an effective and timely move to adult care and support.
How does it affect carers?
The Care Act places a duty on Local Authorities to;
· Promote wellbeing, when carrying out any of their care and support functions in respect of a person. It is a guiding principle that puts wellbeing at the heart of care and support and applies equally to carers as well as to people with support needs.
· “establish and maintain a service for providing people in its area with information and advice relating to care and support for adults and support for carers”.
The Care Act gives carers, ‘who appear to have any level of needs for support’, an entitlement to an assessment of their needs, regardless of the amount of care they provide or whether or not the local authority thinks they will meet the eligibility criteria.
This assessment considers;
· the impact of caring on the carer
· the things that a carer wants to achieve in their own day-to-day life
· whether the carer is able or willing to carry on in their caring role
· whether carers work or want to work
· whether they want to study, or do more socially.
If both the carer and the person they care for agree, a combined assessment of both their needs can be done.
The Care Act introduced national rules for deciding who is eligible for care and support.
Following an assessment; the assessor/ local authority will make a decision as to whether the carers needs meet the eligibility criteria. If so; the local authority must draw up a support plan, detailing how these needs will be met. The support plan must include details about the needs the council is going to meet and any personal budget available.
Find out more
www.gov.uk and search for Care Act factsheets.
www.york.gov.uk and search for the Care Act under Adult Social Care