The Care Act

What is the Care Act?

The Care Act 2014 focuses on wellbeing, and ensures we work together to prevent need developing and reducing the delay in response when need is identified.

Care Act Fact Sheet [pdf document]

The key principles of the Care Act

The Care Act sets out some 'key principles' on how health and social care professionals should work with you. Those principles are:-

  • You know best
  • Your views, wishes, feelings and beliefs should always be considered
  • The main aim of professionals should be on your well-being, on reducing your need for care and support, and on reducing the likelihood that you will need care and support in the future
  • Any decisions made should take into account all relevant circumstances
  • Any decisions should be made with your involvement
  • Your well-being should be balanced with that of any involved family and friends
  • Professionals should always work to protect you and other people from abuse and neglect
  • Professionals should ensure that any actions taken to support or protect you affect your rights and freedom as little as possible

Complete a support needs assessment or carers assessment

The Act sets out how many aspects of support are arranged, and aims to give control and influence to those in need of support. Among the most significant aspects are

  • Criteria [pdf document] that makes it clear when the local authority has to provide support to people
  • The way in which local authorities assess what people need.  People seeking support will be encouraged to think about what outcomes they want to achieve in their lives - these outcomes can be anything, big or small, which will enable them to feel a greater sense of physical or emotional well-being
  • Carers are entitled to an assessment. If a carer is eligible for support for particular needs, they have a legal right to receive support for those needs, just like the people they care for
  • Protecting the most vulnerable people in our society from abuse and neglect [external link]
  • Emphasis on prevention. Local authorities and other providers of support will encourage and assist people to lead healthy lives which will reduce the chances of them needing more support in the future
  • Local authorities need to provide clear information and advice to help the public make informed choices on their support arrangements, and enable them to stay in control of their lives
  • Personal Budgets giving people the power to spend allocated money on tailored care that suits their individual needs as part of their support plan
  • Those most in need being given access to an advocate, someone to speak up on their behalf and help with the assessment process
  • Regulation of those who provide professional care and support, and penalties for those who do not provide care and support of a high enough standard
  • When and how people will be asked to contribute towards the cost of support which has been arranged in conjunction with their local authority - most of these changes will not come into effect until 2020.