We at Dorset County Council have a duty to assess anyone who appears to us to be eligible for social care services. If we think you may need our services, we will carry out what we call a "Supported Assessment".
It is important to note that carers can ask for an assessment of their own needs, even if the person they care for does not want an assessment.
The assessment involves one of our social workers visiting you in your home. Before the visit, we will ask you to complete a questionnaire that asks about your needs. This will help you think about what is important to you. This is called self directed support and gives you choice and control over the help you get.
The assessment will ask a number of questions such as:
- What can you do for yourself?
- What can you do if given some help?
- What needs to be done for you?
- What help do you feel you need?
- Who helps you at the moment?
- If you have someone looking after you, what do they feel about the support and care you need?
- What is the best way of meeting your needs?
If you are eligible for our care services, the assessment will allow us to write a Support Plan. This describes how your, or your carers, needs can be met and your objectives achieved as well as what this will cost. The plan will be reviewed regularly to take into account your changing needs. If you are not eligible, we will advise on the sort of help you might need and the organisations that can provide it.
If support at home is the best way to meet your needs, then your Support Plan will set out what this entails. We will then obtain the necessary services from our suppliers on your behalf.
If you need services provided by us, you can decide whether to have the Council provide this support directly, or to have a personal budget. A personal budget puts you in control of the care you receive and allows you to decide whether or not to manage this budget through the Direct Payment Scheme.
To make sure that services are provided fairly and used to support people in the greatest need, we use guidelines which we call Fair Access to Care Services eligibility criteria. We assess peoples' needs individually to find out if their level of need qualifies for a service and if so, at what level of priority.
A charge is made for most care services. Usually the amount you pay will depend on how much capital (for example, property) and savings you have, although this varies from service to service. Our staff will be as sensitive as possible when discussing your financial situation.
Details about charges are in these factsheets
- Paying for non-residential care services (opens in a new window)
- Day care services including charges (opens in a new window)
- Care home provision for adults including charges (opens in a new window)
- Paying for services in a care home (opens in a new window)
Asking for an assessment
If you wish to request an assessment and you are a new customer or have no current involvement with us, please contact the Adult Access Team. If you currently receive a service from us, please contact your allocated worker at the social care local office.
Standard of service
We are committed to providing quality services to service users and their carers. Please let us know how our service meets our standards.