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Care at home frequently asked questions

A list of the most frequently asked questions we get asked about arranging care at home.

Who provides care at home?

What help could I get from care at home?

Will I have to pay for care at home?

How can I apply for care at home?

Will I need an assessment for care at home?

What happens after I am assessed?

What is reablement support?

What if I need long-term care at home?

When are care services provided?

What if I have to go into hospital?

What if my needs change?

What are the standards in providing care at home?

Can I arrange my own care at home service?

What is a direct payment?

 

 

Who provides care at home?

Care at home services may be provided by:

  • staff from the Integrated Domiciliary Care Service who are employed by either Swansea Council or the NHS. This is usually referred to as 'home care'.
  • a private care agency or voluntary organisation contracted to work for Social Services, which is usually referred to as 'domiciliary care'.

What help could I get from care at home?

The support which is available through care at home depends on your individual needs. It might include:

  • help with personal care such as washing, dressing or using the toilet;
  • help with preparing meals and with eating;
  • support for carers.

We are not able to provide services such as housework and shopping, however Social Services staff will usually work with you to find alternative ways of getting your housework and shopping done if you can no longer manage this for yourself.

Will I have to pay for care at home?

The amount you would be expected to pay depends on how much money you have as income and savings, and how much care you are getting. Some people are not asked to pay anything.

You can find out more about how charges are worked out on our Charges for care at home page. We will discuss any charges with you before you start the service.

How can I apply for care at home?

You can apply directly to Social Services by contacting our  Common Access Point for Health and Social Care (CAP).

You can also ask a relative or carer, your GP, district nurse or health visitor to get in touch on your behalf. If you are in hospital please ask to speak to the ward staff.

Will I need an assessment for care at home?

If we think that care at home might be useful to you, we will get in touch with you to carry out an assessment of your needs. This will help us to work out with you what support will suit you best, and whether you qualify for care at home. You can read more about this on our Care and support assessments for adults page.

Unfortunately we are not able to provide care at home services to everyone who asks for them. If we are unable to provide you with care at home, we will give you information and advice about how else you might be able to arrange practical help at home.

What happens after I am assessed?

If we are able to provide you with a care at home service we will work with you to write a care and support plan. This will list all the help you will get from the care at home provider. We will give you a copy of the assessment and the care and support plan.

Some people may have to wait before they start receiving a service. We will let you know when the service is likely to start.

What is reablement support?

Some people, particularly those recovering after a period of ill health, will initially receive a short-term reablement services which will last for up to six weeks. An integrated team of care workers and therapists will visit you at home and support you to become able to do things for yourself that you used to do. This may include the provision of specialised equipment to help you.

By the end of the reablement period many people are once again able to manage at home on their own or with the support of family and friends.

If, after receiving a reablement service, you still need regular care and support to manage at home, we will review your care and support plan. In most cases we will then make arrangements to transfer your care and support to a long-term care provider.

What if I need long-term care at home?

If you need long-term care at home, we will make arrangements with a care provider to provide the care you need.

Before you start receiving care at home, staff from the service provider will arrange to meet and agree a personal plan with you to set out how your care and support needs will be met.

We, and the agencies that provide care on our behalf, employ both male and female care staff. We recognise that you may have a preference. If so, please let us know and we will do what we can to accommodate this.

When are care services provided?

As there are a large number of people receiving care at home services, it is not always possible to provide your service at your preferred time. Providers, however, will work with you to ensure your needs are met.

What if I have to go into hospital?

If you are in hospital, you may not be able to resume your package of care with your existing care provider and new care arrangements may have to be put in place before you can be discharged.

What if my needs change?

Social Services and the provider will carry out regular reviews of your care and support needs.

If you feel, at any time, that you may need more or less care, please ask us to review your needs. Either speak to the care staff who are providing your care, or contact Common Access Point for Health and Social Care (CAP).

Be aware that a change of needs, particularly if a hospital stay has been involved, may result in a change to your care provider.

What are the standards in providing care at home?

  • Social Services will agree with you and prepare a care and support plan that meets your individual needs. We will keep your care and support plan under review, and change it if your needs change.
  • The quality of care provision will be monitored by Social Services.
  • The care provider will carry out a health and safety check to make sure that the care which is provided in your home environment is safe for you and for care staff.
  • Care staff will carry identification.
  • Care staff will have received training in providing care.
  • Care staff will receive regular professional supervision to make sure they are doing their job well.
  • The provider will give you more detailed information about how the service operates and who to contact with any queries when they start to provide your care.

Can I arrange my own care at home service?

If you have been assessed by Social Services as being eligible for care at home, you can choose whether to have a service arranged by Social Services, or to have a 'direct payment' so that you can make your own arrangements.

What is a 'direct payment'?

With a 'direct payment' you can choose to employ your own personal assistant, or buy care from an agency, or both.

If you have already been buying care privately from a care agency before being assessed as eligible for support by Social Services and you wish to continue with the same agency, and keep the care staff you already know, a 'direct payment' can be given to you as a contribution to your costs. Be aware though, that the 'direct payment' may not cover the full cost of care from the agency you choose and you may have to pay a top-up yourself.

A direct payment may also be more suitable for you if you prefer to have your care provided at specific times, or you would only accept care staff of one gender.

 

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