Date received: 11 March 2014 (Handed in to Democratic Services).
Issue debated at Executive meeting on 13 March 2014, then at Health and Wellbeing Scrutiny Committee on 1 April 2014 where no advice was offered to the Executive regarding amending the decision.
Response from Executive Member for Adult Health and Social Care: The Council has a statutory responsibility that for every resident where it has been agreed that they should attend a day centre or the like the Council must “make arrangements” for the provision to that client of assistance in travelling to and from his home. The duty is to “arrange” not necessarily to fund or provide transport. The Council will continue to meet that commitment in full for all its clients and, furthermore, wherever there is no “alternative arrangement” the local Authority will continue to provide the transport provision.
However, what the current service does not cover is a personalised or individual service for individuals and it denies some service users the opportunities and flexibility that many take for granted. As many people are now living significantly longer than before with complex health and physical and emotional needs we have to explore ways of doing things differently. There is a greater emphasis on services being individual and being bespoke to the person not the service and if we only have this current transport service then everyone is offered this and nothing else; it is not innovative, bespoke or individual.
For every individual who uses transport we will be undertaking further comprehensive assessment of their need which will be based on the following:-
1. Assessment of eligible needs (taking into account the resources of the local authority) and support planning.
2. Determining the support to meet the needs.
3. Deciding the best way of meeting the needs in the most cost effective manner
4. Arranging services to meet the assessed and eligible needs.
5. Reviewing the service.
Principles of any transport offer
1. Any offer of transport should be on the persons assessed need.
2. Any service provided should help people to be as independent as possible.
3. Where we provide or arrange transport it will form part of the persons overall personal budget.
4. People will be expected to access services that meet their assessed eligible needs as close to where they live as possible.
5. If people can travel independently then they will be expected to do so (for example, via walking, using public transport, with assistance of others using assisted mobility etc).
6. Part of any assessment will be to check that it is reasonable to expect them to do so, and where appropriate the solution to accessing services should include reablement and enablement services to support the individual to greater independence.
7. When we are undertaking assessments we always consider the needs and support of the carers.
Following a scrutiny review of the consideration of the petition, the matter has been scheduled for the debate at the Council meeting on 16 October 2014.