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What Is A Care Needs Assessment?

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Who are these assessments for?

A care needs assessment is for anyone who thinks they would benefit from additional support day-to-day for themselves, a friend or a family member. The NHS has a lot of helpful information about the local council needs assessment if you require “equipment like a walking frame or personal alarm, changes to your home such as a walk-in shower, or practical help from a paid carer” as well as other services, such as accessing respite carers and day centres to give carers a break.

What can a needs assessment do?

A needs assessment can, via carefully worded questions and their responses, show if an individual needs support via special equipment or care and if so, what form it should take. If a person has long-term health needs and they are unable to fund care themselves, they will be eligible for NHS continuing healthcare, whereby a multidisciplinary team of healthcare professionals will assess their needs. They will be looking to see what help the person needs and how complex those needs are, as well as other key markers.

However, if you have the funds to be able to pay for part or all of your care yourself you will usually be expected to do so, although the NHS will still be able to give you advice and other forms of support.

How does this assessment work?

You will need to contact your local council’s adult social services department to arrange a care needs assessment, and Age UK recommend you “explain you need support managing everyday tasks like accessing your community” to ensure they recognise your need. There won’t be a charge for the actual assessment, and everyone is entitled to one. If you’re arranging an assessment for another person then they must agree to it taking place, unless they lack the mental capacity or the ability to communicate their wishes themselves.

The actual assessment will be carried out by a social care professional on the telephone, online, or face to face. They will ask you questions and look at all aspects of your life, including the emotional and social side, your existing skills and abilities, your views, background and who currently supports you, your health and housing requirements, your physical difficulties and your needs and wishes for your care.

They will also need to talk to members of your multidisciplinary healthcare team, such as your GP, if you agree. This is to make sure that you’ll be supported in the most effective way by the whole team of professionals who look after you.

Things to consider before your assessment

Before you have your assessment you should think about what you are hoping to achieve from it. If you find it difficult to express yourself or you’re worried you’ll forget what you wanted to say, write important points down or ask a family member or friend to attend the assessment with you. Be specific about the kind of help you need and make sure you mention everything that is important to you.

For instance, tell them if you would like someone to assist you in attending services such as a church or mosque, or to visit family members, as well as the more personal care needs such as help with showering or going to the toilet. This will achieve a holistic approach to your care, ensuring your whole-person needs are being taken into account, rather than just the basic physical needs such as medication and food.

Care needs assessments from Helping Hands

Whether your care is being funded by the NHS, direct payments or you are paying for care yourself, Helping Hands can deliver a whole-person homecare service that will ensure you are being fully looked after in the comfort and security of your own home. Thanks to over 30 years of experience delivering homecare we are considered the industry experts, and you’ll always receive the highest levels of care from our professional and dedicated carers.

When you first contact us about your care we will arrange for one of our local managers to visit you and explain just what our care involves, as well as talk you through your options and discover what you’re hoping for from your care. We will then arrange your bespoke package of care and produce your personalised support plan, so that your whole multidisciplinary healthcare team can see how you wish to be cared for and how this can be achieved for you in your home.

Contact our friendly and helpful customer care team seven days a week to discover how we could be supporting you or your loved ones to live your best life at home.