At Choice Care Group, we understand that making the decision to entrust your child, relative or even yourself to the care of other people can be traumatic enough without having to worry about how it will be funded or how you will go about finding the right package of support. We have therefore put together some guidance for you with the options and processes involved which we hope will help in some way.
A residential placement typically consists of a property, located within an ordinary community setting (owned by the care provider) that is shared between a group of individuals with similar needs. Care is usually provided on a 24 hour basis, with either waking or sleep in night support, depending on the needs of the individuals. There are also staff on shift throughout the day to support individuals in all aspects of their life.
Within Choice Care Group, the package includes psychology & psychiatric support from our own in-house teams and the provision of a full programme of activities. All food and household bills are paid for, all standard furniture provided and maintenance of the property, including safety adaptations, repairs and the installation of assistive technology is all the responsibility of Choice.
Supported Living Placements
‘Supported Living’ is a term used whereby an individual has their own apartment or house (tenancy) which is usually rented (although we do have one example of where the family have purchased a [property on behalf of their children). People may choose to live on their own or to ‘house share’ with peers. Alongside sourcing a property, (which can be through local council housing stock, a housing association or a private landlord), the individual will have their care support needs assessed by the funding authority.
Providers will them be invited to meet the individual and their representatives who will select which provider they want to deliver this care.
In terms of how Supported Living placements are funded, this works as follows:
- The direct care (as assessed by the funding authority, most likely by your allocated social work or care coordinator) is paid by the local council or NHS.
- The property rental costs are covered by housing benefit.
- Food, personal effects, furniture and utility bills are paid for by the individual through their allocation of benefits and any personal monies they may have. Obviously, if the person is able to / wants to live with peers, some costs can be shared.
Where the individual is still living within the family home and the family perhaps need the individual cared for whilst they are at work / attending to other family members or they cannot cope with caring for the individual by themselves, the care of package the home, the individual can be allocated support to access community based activities and opportunities.
For both ‘Supported Living’ and ‘Community Support’ packages of care, the number of hours allocated to the person is totally individual and based upon need. For some, the care package may consist of as little as one or two hours a week. For others however, the support delivered may be on a 24-hour basis, with either ‘waking’ or ‘sleep-in’ night support.
Deciding on which package of support is right – be that a residential placement, supported living or community support is totally dependent on what works best for individual, at that particular time in their life. Some may find that the residential option works best for them on an on-going basis. Others may move on to a supported living placement following a period in a residential home. Others might move directly from home or school in to their own supported living tenancy. As with any of us, different styles of living suit different people!
How do I find a good provider?
There are various website that will direct you to care providers. One of the most popular is www.carehome.co.uk. Also, your local council may have advice on their own website. Alternative, you can ‘Google’ the key phrase or words that apply to type of care and support you are looking for.
Once you have found a provider you are interested in, look them up on the Care Quality Commission (CQC website). CQC is an independent body who monitor, inspect and rate care providers.
Always visit the care provider. Find out about their values, meet the manager and staff and really get a ‘feel’ for the organisation. Never be afraid of asking questions – as many as you like and as frequently as you need.
Before offering to provide a placement or care package, the provider should always complete a thorough assessment so as to ensure that they fully understand the person being referred and are confident that they can meet their needs.
At Choice Care Group, we work closely with the families of the people we support and for those individuals, who are not able to advocate for themselves, welcome the advice of friends and family so that we can support the individual to lead a lifestyle that encompasses their likes, dislikes and all that is important to them.