Direct payments will open way for marketing to the customer

Posted on February 1st, by editor in Caring Times. No Comments

A senior official of the Department of Health has confirmed to Caring Times that direct payments for elderly people, announced in the social services White Paper last November, are planned to start before March 2000. The direct payments scheme currently applies only to adults under 65. The scheme means that clients of social services departments, instead of having direct services from social services, or having services bought for them, receive money from social services and buy the services themselves from whoever they choose. There are safeguards since the money has to be spent on agreed services following assessment of need, but the clients have freedom. For instance, they can select and pay someone to attend to their personal needs. The scheme includes residential and nursing home care, but only for short stay and respite, not long term care. Social services departments have the option not to participate but there is strong pressure for them to do so. When the scheme is extended to elderly people, and tha

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