Important Changes for Hampshire Direct Payments Users in 2012

SCIL has been contracted by Hampshire County Council (HCC) to provide a Direct Payments Support Service for many years to provide information, advice and support for Direct Payments Users in Hampshire.

However, today it has been revealed that Direct Payments users will shortly be receiving a letter from Hampshire Adult Services informing users that the Direct Payments Support Service in Hampshire will end on the 31st December 2011.

From January 2012, the Direct Payments Support Service  in Hampshire will be replaced by a system that Hampshire Adult Services believes will allow the individual to choose what support they need from the organisation that best suits them.

Your Direct Payments will still continue to paid into your bank account as normal.

Following the news, Robert Droy, the Independent Living Team Manager commented ‘SCIL strongly believes in the concept of individuals having choice and control over who and how they receive support in managing their Direct Payments. However we also believe that high quality peer support, advice and information should be freely available to ALL current and potential Direct Payments users without having to request additional funding from the local authority to pay for it.’

SCIL have made it clear that they will provide as much support as necessary to users until the 31st December 2011 however from the 1st January 2012 they will be unable to offer users in Hampshire any free ongoing support with managing their personal budget/direct payment.

Direct Payments users living in Southampton are unaffected by any of these changes and will still be able to receive support from the Direct Payments Support Workers and access the PA register  as normal.

Direct Payments users in Hampshire who require ongoing support, to manage their Direct Payments / Personal Budget, after 31st December 2011, will need to contact Hampshire Adult Services to request additional funding on top of their Direct Payments / Personal Budget. This is can then be used to purchase the support from either SCIL or another provider of the user’s choice.

SCIL will still continue to run Personal Budgets/Direct Payments Peer Support groups in Hampshire for free and will be running some extra groups during October – Find the dates and venues here.

Robert Droy emphasised that SCIL’s main priority over the next few months is to ensure current Direct Payments users are fully supported during any handover period.

SCIL are also looking at ways to provide continued support for Direct Payments users in Hampshire in 2012, but any support with personal budgets/direct payments (with the exception of Peer Support Groups) is likely to be a service that individual Direct Payments users will have to pay SCIL directly for from their personal budget / Direct Payments funding. Please contact SCIL  if you are interested in this service.

SCIL has set up a dedicated phone line at SCIL that will be staffed from 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday to answer any questions you may have. The telephone number is 023 8020 2643. If you leave a message outside these hours, SCIL will get back to you the following day.You can also email directpayments@southamptoncil.co.uk 

Robert Droy concluded by stating that SCIL was still working in partnership with Hampshire Adult Services on a number of different projects and both parties were committed to the principle of Co-Production, Peer Support, and User Led Organisations.

You can hear Robert discussing the changes below.

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