Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Personalisation - targetted cuts

Personalisation is like Care in the Community - it's a great idea until the County Treasurer gets hold of it - and uses it to implement service cuts. Our Local Authority has used the Personalisation RAS (Resource Allocation Model) to impose cost cielings on care packages and taken on cost cutting consultants to target the most expensive care packages (the most needy) for cuts. They get paid a percentage of the cost savings they make - so no conflict of interest with providing a good service there then! Unfortunately the politicians seem to have bought the cosmetics of Personalisation - one in a million has used his Direct Payments to get a dog as a companion, so he doesn't get depressed. The bulk of people with disabilities need more mundane things like a decent wheelchair or enough care/nursing staff. But these tend to cost more than dog licences so they become targets for cost savings. To the client and carer, Personalisation in practice looks more like personalised targetting for service reductions.

PS The RAS is very careful to take out the cost of carer provided services - carers are only seen as valuable when they save the Treasurer money - their service isn't valued at all.

1 comment:

  1. This scratches at the surface about my concerns about the implementation of Individual Budgets - everyone, of course, emphasises choice but the truth is, all anyone is interested in is reducing costs - if family care was taken into account it would bankrupt every local authority and noone can face up to that. I personally, feel quite angry about the way this is dressed as promoting choice when there are still restrictions based on cost rather than need. Every time I raise any concerns about the rolling out of personalisation, I'm demonised as someone who is opposing choice of users - which I feel very strongly about - after all, my father used Direct Payments very successfully.
    The more I see of the process, the more I understand that it was dreamt up in officers of commissioners.