Government sets personal budgets target for 2011


Three in ten adults who are eligible for council-funded support services should be receiving them through personal budgets by April 2011, according to new guidance.

And by October 2010, local authorities will be expected to offer a personal budget to all new service-users, and all existing service-users when their care plans are reviewed.

The targets, or “milestones”, are part of a letter to every director of adult social services in England sent by senior figures in the Department of Health (DH), Local Government Association (LGA) and Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS).

An ADASS and LGA survey in March this year found that just eight per cent of eligible service-users and carers had a personal budget.

The letter sets out five priorities for councils, as part of the government’s Putting People First (PPF) programme, which aims to personalise adult social care.

One priority is for councils to develop the PPF programme in partnership with service-users.

Another is to ensure that disabled people and other service-users have access to suitable information and advice on how to meet their support needs.

The letter also repeats the government’s target of a user-led centre for independent living in every local authority area by the end of 2010.

The letter, written by Jenny Owen, president of ADASS, David Behan, the DH’s director general of social care, and Andrew Cozens, who leads on adult social care for the LGA, warns councils that the transformation of adult social care cannot take place without the “full engagement” of all service-users.

10 September 2009