Assessments under the Care Act

A needs assessment is a discussion between you and a trained person from the council, where you will talk about the care and support needs you have and the goals you want to achieve. We will use the assessment to identify your care and support needs, and to discuss how these can best be met. This might mean that the council will give you help or put you in touch with other local organisations that you can assist you.

What will be considered during the needs assessment?

The needs assessment will consider what care and support needs you have and how these affect your wellbeing. This will include identifying any physical needs, such as whether you need help to wash or dress, get in and out of bed or keep your home safe to live in. The assessment will also look at your mental and emotional needs and ask what is important to you in how you live your life, such as being able to carry on working or volunteering, or being able to meet your friends.

Everyone’s needs and the ways they affect people’s wellbeing are different. Identifying your needs and the things you want to achieve will help us to decide if we can help. Depending on what needs you have, we may give you information and advice about other kinds of support available locally that can help you.

Will I need to be re-assessed?

If you are already receiving care and support from us, you do not need to ask for a reassessment. If your needs have changed recently and you feel like you need more care and support, you can make a request for your current support arrangements to be reviewed.

Who should have a needs assessment?

For more information about assessments including details of how to arrange one, please see the Assessment page.

How will I know if I have eligible needs?

The Care Act specifies the national minimum eligibility threshold which consists of a set of criteria which if met means you will be provided with a service. The council will assess your care and support needs with you, and decide the level of support that you need from us. You could be eligible for care or support if you are not able to do certain things like washing yourself, getting dressed, getting in and out of bed or keeping your home safe for you to live in.

After the assessment we will write to you about our decision and give you reasons to explain what we have decided. If you have eligible needs, we will contact you to discuss what help might be available. This will be based on the information you gave us during your assessment. As far as possible the council will agree your care and support plan with you.

If you do not have needs that are eligible, we will give you information and advice about what care and support is available to help you locally. For example, this could be help from local charities or voluntary organisations.

How will the national minimum eligibility threshold affect you if you are planning to move?

The national minimum eligibility threshold level will give you peace of mind that if you decide to move to another area in England, the new council will meet at least the same minimum level of care and support needs as your old one. Councils will also have to work together to make sure that there is no gap in your care.

See the GOV.UK - Care Act 2014 Part 1 factsheets website (external link) for further information on entitlement (factsheet 2) and determining eligibility (factsheet 3).

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Page last updated:

December 19, 2022