In 2013 The Scottish Parliament passed a new law on social care support, the Social Care (Self-directed Support) (Scotland) Act 2013. The Act gives people a range of options for how their social care is delivered, beyond just direct payments, empowering people to decide how much ongoing control and responsibility they want over their own support arrangements. The Act places a duty on council’s to offer people four choices as to how they receive their social care support. The choices are:
> Option 1
“I receive a budget to spend on the support which best suits my needs.”
This is usually called a direct payment. The council pay money directly to you and you arrange your own support by employing care staff or buying services from one or more organisations.
> Option 2
“I choose the support which best suits my needs and the council or a third party make the arrangements.”
The council or an organisation of your choice holds the money but you are in charge of how it is spent.
> Option 3
“I agree for the council to spend the money on the support they feel best meets my needs.”
You ask your council to choose and arrange the support that they think is right for you.
> Option 4
“A mix of options 1, 2 and 3.”
Option 4 lets you choose a mix of these options for different types of support.
The Act contains some other duties and powers, for example a power to authorities to support unpaid carers and duties on authorities to give you support and information to help you make an informed choice.
For more information, take a look at The Social Care (Self-directed Support) (Scotland) Act 2013 and Explanatory Notes or check out easy-read guide to the Act.