Portability of Care Packages

  • The Henry Spink Foundation Portability Campaign: Michael and Henrietta Spink are campaigners for the disabled. They live in Cornwall with their two severely disabled sons, Freddie and Henry. They have been campaigning for the portability of domiciliary care packages for over 3 years. Their campaigning has encompassed Ministers and politicians from all sides of the political spectrum, as well as key Local Government bodies including the LGA and ADASS, key reviews and consultations such as the Law Commission and the Commission for the Funding of Social Care, other charities and organisations who work in fields affected by these issues. There has been overwhelming support for the principle of portability (please see charity quotes below).
    Link: http://www.henryspink.org/home.htm.
  • Personal Care at Home Act 2010: the principle of portability was included and approved by Parliament in this legislation passed in the last days of the Labour Government early last year. The 2010 Coalition Government have chosen not to commence this Act due to concerns about other principles included within the bill regarding the provision of free care for the most needy older residents irrespective of their wealth.
    Link: http://www.dh.gov.uk/en/Publicationsandstatistics/Legislation/Actsandbills/DH_110405
  • The Law Commission Report: “Adult Social Care” May 2011 - The Law Commission is the statutory independent body created by the Law Commissions Act 1965 to keep the law under review and to recommend reform where it is needed. It undertook a scoping paper on adult social care legislation in 2008 and carried out a full consultation in 2010 reporting to the Government in May 2011. It recommended that changes to statues should enable portability of care and support.
    Link to all documentation: http://www.justice.gov.uk/lawcommission/adult-social-care.htm
  • The Dilnot Report: “Fairer Care Funding: The Report of the Commission for the Funding of Social Care” July 2011 - an independent body commissioned by the Government to make recommendations on how we can achieve an affordable and sustainable funding system for care and support, for all adults in England, both in the home and other settings. Included the portability of care assessments within their top 6 recommendations and stated that the current system is confusing, unfair and unsustainable (see p5, p52 and p65)
    Link: https://www.wp.dh.gov.uk/carecommission/files/2011/07/Fairer-Care-Funding-Report.pdf
  • The Government are using the Law Commission and Dilnot review as the basis for consideration in the forthcoming Department of Health, Adult Social Care White Paper now expected in Spring 2012, to be followed by legislation in the second parliamentary term.
  • The Sayce Report: “Getting in, staying in and getting on: Disability employment support fit for the future” June 2011 - an independent review commissioned by Government and led by Liz Sayce (Chief Executive of RADAR, and a Commissioner at the UK Commission for Employment and Skills) identifies portability of care packages as one of 8 key barriers and opportunities to facilitate better access to real jobs.
    Link: http://www.dwp.gov.uk/policy/welfare-reform/specialist-disability-employment/
  • Social Care Portability Bill [HL] 2010-11, Baroness Campbell of Surbiton, Crossbencher, has introduced a Private Members Bill (PMB) into the House of Lords. PMB’s are Public Bills introduced by MPs or Lords who are not government ministers. As with other Public Bills their purpose is to change the law as it applies to the general population. A minority of Private Members' Bills become law but, by creating publicity around an issue, they may affect legislation indirectly. There is currently no date for the second reading of this bill and it will fall at the end of the parliamentary session if it has not progressed.
    Link: http://services.parliament.uk/bills/2010-11/socialcareportabilityhl.html

  • Charity quotes supporting the Henry Spink Campaign for portability of care packages:

    The Princess Royal Trust for Carers, Dr Moira Fraser, Director of Policy: “When people receiving social care support move area – perhaps out of necessity because a loved-one needs more support or because of a change in employment - the care which they have already been assessed as needing doesn’t follow them. This can mean they’re left to completely on their own until a new assessment takes place – and even then there is no guarantee their support will be reinstated. Families shouldn’t have to risk losing desperately needed support. At The Princess Royal Trust for Carers, we urge Ministers to reform the law to make sure local authorities work together, ensuring no family is left without the support it needs.”

    Mencap, Mark Goldring CBE, Chief Executive “Mencap agrees with your observations and concerns caused by the lack of portability in the current adult social care system. Furthermore we agree that the best solution would be to introduce Portable Assessments on a statutory footing. We raised this very issue with the Law Commission during their recent review of adult social care's legal framework. It was pleasing that the Law Commission have supported this position. …We welcome the work of the Henry Spink Foundation to see the inclusion of a portable assessment in future reforms.”

    NAAPS UK, Alex Fox, CEO: “NAAPS is a national network for individuals, families and small local groups who ensure that disabled and older people can live the lives they want in the families and communities they choose. The current system can make this impossible for disabled people who want to move to a different council area. Freedom of movement is a basic human right. We are pleased the Dilnot Commission report supports this position and we are proud to support the Spink Foundation in calling on the government to put a simple solution in place to fix this perennial problem."

    The National Centre for Independent Living (NCIL), Sue Bott, Director: “The NCIL supports the notion that disabled people, older people, and carers should be able move from one part of the country to another and retain their package of support. NCIL has always been concerned with the situation that if a user of social care service moves from one area to another they lose their package of support and have to start again with the new local authority which takes time and leaves the person concerned with out support, sometimes for months.Unlike other citizens of the European Union, social care service users do not enjoy freedom of movement.

    The consequences are emotionally damaging to the people concerned and make no economic sense. For example disabled people are unable to move to take advantage of employment opportunities. Older people are unable to move to be nearer where their grown up children live and work and so cannot be supported by

    Carers UK: "Carers UK strongly supports the principle of portability in the care and support system. This would allow families receiving vital social care services to keep the type of support that they rely on and are used to, wherever they live, rather than risking the collapse of their care packages and being forced to fight through
    assessments and bureaucracy again simply because they have moved into a different council area. Not only would portability reduce stress and confusion for families but would cut down unnecessary bureaucracy in local councils."

    AGE UK: “Portability of care packages is when a care package is moved from one LA to another if for example someone moves house. At the moment there is no such portability and someone would have to be reassessed by their new LA, and there are no guarantees that they would be eligible for care in their new LA. This means that people get concerned about moving house for instance to be nearer to relatives because they don’t want to disrupt their care arrangements which can be extremely upsetting.

    Portability of assessment would mean that someone’s eligibility was set nationally and that they would be able to get services wherever they lived. It would be reliant on having a national criteria for eligibility. It would also not necessarily guarantee the same actual service would be available in their new area, just that they would receive a similar service that would meet their needs.”

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