Direct payments – why aren't more people reaping the benefits?
A key feature and focus of Think Local Act Personal’s current work is to understand better the gap between the rhetoric of personalisation policy and the reality of personalised care and support that people who use services experience.
The uptake of direct payments does not appear to be substantially increasing and we don’t know whether this is because of obstacles in their delivery or whether there are other reasons for this. (In the meantime TLAP has been supporting the sector to think about Individual Service Funds which offer more flexibility but are still an under-used option).
As a sector, we don’t have a clear enough picture to understand the different approaches which councils are taking to implement personal budgets, and direct payments in particular, and we don’t know what the Health and Social Care system might be struggling with in this area.
To this end TLAP wants to find out what tasks direct payment support services are doing. With this information we plan to design a program of work that helps break down some of the barriers to more effective use of direct payments.
The London Self Directed Supported Forum have produced a survey, guided by their members in London and the South East of England. Working in partnership, we’ll be using this survey nationally.
More blogs by Martin Walker.