Health and Social Care Assessment

Health and Social Care Assessment

A health and social care assessment with the social services department of your local council is often the first step towards getting the help and support you need. The assessment is also known as an 'assessment of need'.

The assessment and your care plan

At the assessment, a specialist - often an occupational therapist - looks at your individual needs and discusses them with you. This is so that the right support can be provided where necessary. Services you may need can include healthcare, equipment, help in your home and residential care.

The outcome of an assessment should be an understanding of which needs are most important and an evaluation of the risks to you if help were not provided.

If appropriate, local health and social services teams will put together a package of support for you. This will be discussed with you and a written care plan produced. This may include services from both private and voluntary organisations.

If you need other services such as housing or benefits advice, you will be put in touch with the relevant local services.

Services and support you may be entitled to

Services can include:

  • home care help with things like cleaning and shopping
  • disability equipment and adaptations to your home
  • day centres to give you or the person who cares for you a break
  • day care for your child if either you or they are disabled
  • care homes

Some local councils provide a 'Single Assessment Process for Older People'. With your agreement, health and social workers, community nurses and other groups share information. This means you don't have to give each of them the same information.

Direct Payments

Direct payments are local council payments available for anyone who has been assessed as needing help from social services, and who would like to arrange and pay for their own services instead of receiving them directly from the local council.

Direct payments - arranging your own care and services

Being reassessed

Most people's health needs change over time. Your care plan should be reviewed regularly. As a minimum, reviews are carried out three months after services are first provided or significantly changed and then at yearly intervals. Reviews should be carried out more frequently if appropriate.

If you would like to be reassessed because your needs have changed, contact your local social services or community health team within your local council.

Health and Social Care needs assessment where you live

You can find out about health and social care needs assessments in your area on your local council website. You may be able to apply for an assessment online. The following link will let you enter details of where you live and then take you to your local council website.

Find out about a needs assessment by social services


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This page was last modified on 20 March 2009 at 22:10

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