Nearly everyone in this country will experience care and support at some point in their lives; even if you don’t need care yourself, you will probably know a family member or friend who does, or you may care for someone. ‘Care and support’ is the term used to describe the help some adults need to live as well as possible with any illness or disability they may have. It can include:
- getting out of bed
- getting to work
- cooking meals
- seeing friends
- caring for families
- being part of the community
It might also include emotional support at a time of difficulty and stress, helping people who are caring for an adult family member or friend or even giving others a lift to a social event.
The Care Act 2014 represents the biggest reformation of care and support in 60 years. It takes forward the Government’s commitments to reform social care legislation and to drive up the quality of care. It tells councils across England what they need to do if someone has social care needs and needs support either in their own home or in a care home.
Care Act Advocacy
Do you need help to be involved in decisions about your care needs? An advocate can help you be heard, understand your choices and make your own decisions.
The Care Act brought in changes which mean that any decision about your care will consider your well-being and what is important to you so that you can stay healthy and remain as independent as possible. To do this, it is important that you are fully involved in decisions about your care and support needs.
When is advocacy available?
Advocacy support and representation is available during:
- A needs assessment (under section 9 of the Care Act)
- A carer’s assessment (under section 10 of the Care Act)
- The preparation of a case and support plan or support plan under section 25 of the Care Act
- A review of a care and support plan or support plan under section 27 of the Care Act
Who is Care Act Advocacy service for?
You may be eligible for support from an advocate if you are:
- An adult who needs care and support
- A carer of an adult
- A carer of a young person who is about to start using adult services
- A young person who is about to start using adult services
You have ‘substantial difficulty’ being involved. The substantial difficulty would be if you find it very hard to:
- Understanding information about the decisions
- Remembering information
- Using the information to be involved in the decisions
- Being able to tell people your views, wishes and feelings
- You do not have any friends or family available (or who feel able) to support you.
Advocacy is available if you live at home, in a care home, or hospital, or if you are in prison.
What support does an advocate provide?
An advocate can support you to:
- Understand your choices and make your own decisions
- Tell others what you want and about your views and feelings
- Understand what is happening
- Make sure you get your rights
- Make sure that plans say what you need them to say
Your advocate will work with you to help you understand what is happening and to give your views; they can speak for you if you can’t. Your advocate can help you to think about your choices and what is best for you. If you want to challenge the council’s decision your advocate can help you do this too. Decisions might have been made about you that you are not happy with. Your advocate can help you write a report about the things you don’t like. Your advocate will write the report for you if you are not able to.
How do I get support from an advocate?
If you meet the eligibility requirements, you will need to be referred to our service by Halton Borough Council Adult Social Services- or other organisations employed by the council to make referrals. https://www3.halton.gov.uk/Pages/Home.aspx
Leaflets and Useful Resources
Below is an introductory video from the Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE) giving an overview on what is included in the Care Act and what it might mean for people needing care and support in the future.
The Care Act will impact the lives of many people. We think it is important that you understand what it might mean for your care and support or that of your family, carer or friends now and in the future.
If you have a question to ask then please contact us on 0300 777 6543 or by email to email@example.com. We will be happy to help and if we do not immediately know the answer then we will find somebody that does.
To leave feedback on a service in Halton, or to review the feedback left by others about Health and Social Care services in Halton, visit the Healthwatch Halton feedback centre here.