New government care information agency to be piloted in the south

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

A new government agency, Care Direct, described as a “one-stop shop gateway to information about social care, health, housing and social security benefits”, will be piloted next year. In announcing the new service, Health Minister John Hutton and Cabinet Office Minister lan McCartney said the key elements of Care Direct were: – One telephone number will route callers to local help desks based in local authorities. People who do not wish to, or cannot, use the telephone, will be able to call in person at their local help desks or make contact through outreach facilities – The telephone helpline will be staffed and managed by NHS Direct call centre staff. The local help desks will all provide, at a minimum, information about services covered by Care Direct. – A “befriender” scheme involving older volunteers will augment the local gateways. The Care Direct help desks will be supplemented by on-line facilities, linked to other websites. The Department of Health said it was developing Care Direct after wide consul

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