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Living Better Lives (ASC)

The Care Act and the Council's Adult Social Care Strategy

The Care Act 2014 provides new rights for people needing care and support, and will make it easier for people to find information and advice about how to access what they need. The Act puts emphasis on improving people's independence and wellbeing and preventing, reducing and delaying   formal care and support.

The Care Act is part of wider national reform for both social care and health that is geared to services working together better and putting the person right at the centre of the support and care they receive. The Care Act applies mainly to people who are aged 18 and over.

In line with the statutory principle of the Care Act, we are putting well-being for the population of South Tyneside right at the heart of our new approach to social care. To achieve this we will harness the strengths and capabilities of each individual we work, along with the opportunities presented by their communities and networks of family and friends, to support them to return to health - and to stay well.

In this way we will prevent, reduce and delay the need for formal care and support for many more of our residents than at present. For people who require long term care we will continue to offer high quality support that meets their individual needs.

Key Points about the Care Act 2014

  • The Act came into force from April 2015
  • Everyone must be able to access good information, advice and guidance to make decisions about their own support and care
  • There is a strong emphasis on providing support at an early stage where people are still well enough to keep or regain their independence quickly after an illness or setback. The aim is that people end up needing less or no formal support, or remain self-reliant for much longer before they start to receive care.
  • Prevention is defined on three levels:
    • Primary prevention is about minimising the risk of people developing needs, through access to good information and advice and developing networks within their communities.
    • Secondary prevention is about assisting people at high risk of developing needs and those in crisis, and intervening early
    • Tertiary prevention is about reducing and delaying deterioration and the loss of independence for people with existing needs, or preventing the reoccurrence of a crisis relating to their health or care.
  • All Councils will use new national eligibility and assessment criteria
  • New requirements for assessing people's care and support needs will be carried out jointly with key people concerned with a person's care, such as family and friends.
  • New rights to support for carers, on an equivalent basis to the people they care for
  • A legal framework for safeguarding adults

What changes is South Tyneside Council making?

We are changing the way we work with the people of South Tyneside to ensure people are supported to retain as much control over their lives and stay as self-reliant as they can manage whatever challenges they face due to ageing, illness or disability.

Our Adult Social Care Strategy - Promoting Your Independence outlines how we will implement our new approach.  

We will fulfil our duties under the Care Act prevention principles and assessment requirements by having conversations with people at the first point of contact, listening to what is important to them, and assisting them to connect to information and support in their existing networks and communities.

Where people are at higher risk of developing care needs or may be in crisis, our new Let's Talk team will ensure short term support is available to improve the situation, enabling the person and their family and friends to get on with their lives independently, and alleviate the need for longer term support. Our new Let's Talk Team will be the first point of contact for people who need some information and guidance, to connect to support in their communities. Find out more about the Let's Talk team.

This approach will support many people but for those who require long term care we will continue to provide high quality services to support their quality of life.

The full Care Act can be found at UK Parliament: Care Act.

The following video is a great introduction to the Care Act: Skills For Care: Care Act.

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