Self-directed support and personal budgets

If you need longer term support to maintain your safety, independence and dignity at home, Adult Social Care can help with this, based on an assessment of your needs. Whatever your illness or disability, and for adults of any age, we aim to make sure you are in control of the support you receive, with personal budgets providing you with as much opportunity as you wish to choose your own support arrangements.

Self-directed support and personal budgets can be used by people with a range of needs including older people and adults with an illness or disability.

People are offered a personal budget which they are encouraged to manage themselves, or with help from family and friends, though we can also make arrangements on people’s behalf.  We set the amount of the personal budget based on an assessment of their needs.

Personal budgets can be used flexibly to overcome the obstacles which illness or disability put in the way of living in the way you choose. Depending on your situation this could include personal care and assistance to live in your home or to take part in leisure and educational activities, support to help carers get a break, and items of equipment designed for people with a disabiity.

If someone decides to employ their own care worker, they will become an employer with all the responsibilities that being an employer brings. The support planning team can advise you on how to go about this.

You will need to agree a support plan with us showing how you will use your personal budget. We will check that this is safe and legal. Our support planners can also help you to draw up your support plans, or if you want you can do that yourself.

For the person who receives the personal budget, the money is not classed as income and does not affect any benefits you may receive.

If your disability or illness does not cause you any problems in critical areas of life, you may not be eligible for a personal budget. However we may still be able to give you advice about services and equipment which might help you, and about other possibilities such as adaptations to your home (which you may be able to get financial help for).

If your disability or illness is so serious that you cannot realistically stay in your own home, we can help you to move into supported housing or a care home.

If you would like more information about self-directed support and personal budgets, please contact your care manager or contact Adult Social Care on 01670 536 400 for an information pack and a chat about how self-directed support and personal budgets could benefit you. Alternatively you can email us on socialcare@northumbria.nhs.uk with any questions and requests for information.