Consultation on the proposal to change eligibility criteria for Adult Social Care

Spectrum of support diagram

There are severe budget pressures being faced by Powys County Council, including its Adult Social Care Service. By 2020, we will have to have reduced the council’s budget by some £70m. Please complete our survey. Consultation closing date: Oct 31st.

This consultation is now closed.

You can see the scale of the savings we are having to make in the short term in the table below:

Year Total Savings Adult Social Care
2014-15 £17.5m £2.6m
2015-16 £15.8m £1.1m
2016-17 £7.8m £350,000

In addition, we expect to have increasing demand on our services as the average age of our population increases. In the next 17 years Powys will see a 53% growth in the number of over 65s with a doubling of the number of over 80s.

In view of this, Powys County Council has to consider the ways in which it delivers Adult Social Care services as we have a duty to balance the need and cost of social services in a fair way to make the best use of the resources available. 

If a person is referred to Adult Social Care it is because he/she has been identified as needing some help. 

If this happens, a care manager or other professional will visit to do an assessment.  The assessment will determine their level of eligibility which is identified as one of these four areas which are set by the Welsh Government:-

  • Low
  • Moderate
  • Substantial
  • Critical

The assessment must ensure that he/she can maintain as much control as possible of:

  • their own lives;
  • the care and support that they receive; and of
  • the opportunities to engage in society, employment, training and voluntary activities.

In Powys our eligibility criteria currently begins at ‘Moderate’.  This means that in order to receive services from Adult Social Care, he/she must have difficulty in managing one or two categories of:-

  • personal care
  • domestic tasks
  • learning/employment routines for his or herself.

The law is set by the Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act 2014 and regulations are currently being considered which will set up a national eligibility criteria for the whole of Wales.  This is expected to be completed by 2016 and is likely to be at a higher level than Moderate. Currently 18 out of the 22 local authorities in Wales have Substantial as their minimum eligibility criteria.



Please take part in our survey

In preparation for this law, and to assist the council to direct its limited financial resources at our population who are most in need, we are consulting with members of the public and stakeholders on a proposal to raise our eligibility criteria to ‘Substantial’ and to evaluate the impact of this. 

This would mean that individuals would qualify for an Adult Social Care service only if:

  • There is, or will be, only partial choice and control over the immediate environment; and/or
  • Abuse or neglect has occurred or will occur; and/or
  • There is, or will be, an inability to carry out the majority of personal care or domestic routines; and/or
  • Involvement in many aspects of work, education or learning cannot or will not be sustained; and/or
  • The majority of social support systems and relationships cannot or will not be sustained; and/or
  • The majority of family and other social roles and responsibilities cannot or will not be undertaken

This will only apply to new clients who have been referred for Adult Social Care help and support.  What this means is that if you are a new client, you will still be visited to have an assessment and your needs will be categorised.

Spectrum of support diagram
Click to enlarge

If your assessment says that your needs are Moderate, the services you require, would be supported by the council’s ‘universal services’.  E.g services to prevent social isolation, assisting individuals to maintain their tenancies and manage substance misuse dependencies.  The person who has carried out your assessment will signpost you into what services can be of assistance within your community. e.g. an advocacy service.

You can see other examples of Universal Services in the diagram.

For existing service users whose needs are currently classified as Moderate, you will continue to be supported by Adult Social Care until the time comes when you are re-assessed.  If your needs are then still identified as Moderate you will be referred to the universal services (as described earlier).  

Please take part in our survey