A care plan is crucial in ensuring you or your loved get the right level of care and that the care is given in line with your preferences and wishes. A good care plan is often based on your individual needs and can vary from person to person.

The care plan is put together by your local council and is often flexible, changing as your care needs or those of your loved one change. If you’re in a situation where you or your loved one need a care plan but don’t know where to start, this quick read might help.

What is a Care Plan?

A care plan is a document dictating the type of support you need to meet your private care needs. The outline of the care needs takes into consideration your preferences and what is important to you. It’s important to get as involved as possible in supporting the planning the process and ensuring your wishes are known and captured in the plan. Some of the details your care plan should include are:

  • What type of support you should receive.
  • An assessment of your care needs.
  • Who should provide the care.
  • Your wishes and personal preferences.
  • The cost of the services.
  • Records of care provided.
  • When the support and care should be provided.

The local authority will contribute towards the cost of your care plan if it is determined that you have support and care needs.

There are variations toy our care plan and it could include everything from having home adaptations to make you more independent to having personal assistants visiting you at home.

Why is a Care Plan Important?

A care plan is not something you should take lightly. It’s vital to have one because it ensures you or your loved one receive the right level of longterm care consistently. It also ensures that your care workers and the people around you are fully aware of your personal requirements and fully understand your condition.

How Do You Get a Care Plan?

The process of getting a care plan sounds scary and tedious. But, you only need to follow a few steps.

  1. Apply for an assessment

The first step to getting a care plan is to request for an assessment from your local council. The type of assessment you request for could be either:

  • A needs assessment – A needs assessment is free if you need care for yourself. It evaluates your needs and determines whether you qualify for local authority care. During the assessment, you can discuss the challenges you face and the difference it would make if these challenges were solved.
  • A carer’s assessment – If the support is for someone else, you need to apply for a carer’s assessment. This is also free. You can request for it at the same time as a needs assessment if you need both. Some of the points of discussion during a carer’s assessment is how caring affects your physical and mental health, your work-life balance as well as your relationships.

Both types of assessments are followed by a financial assessment which determines whether the local council will pay for your care.

  1. Receive a Care Plan

Several weeks after your requested assessment, you will receive a written care plan from your local council.

  1. Sign the assessment

Upon receiving the care plan, a written copy of the assessment will need to be signed by you and the local authority. Once signed, your care plan is complete. If you’re not happy with the care plan, you can raise a complaint with the main contact on your care plan to try and get changes.