Following our blog last week on the open letter In Control sent to Norman Lamb recognising this being a critical moment for Personalisation, warning bureaucracy and lack of trust in people and social workers is derailing personal budgets and advising how to avoid snatching defeat from the jaws of success.

Home Care Direct feel never was a truer word said, the letter warned that the next couple of years were “absolutely critical” in determining whether personalisation delivered big improvements for people or became a “tragically missed opportunity”. “As things stand there is great potential but a high risk of failure,” it added.

It called on Lamb to follow some of the recommendations of the recent review by David Boyle for the Cabinet Office on extending choice and control in public services. These included phasing out preferred provider lists, replacing assessments of need with assessments that took account of people’s capabilities and informal resources, and placing a duty on councils to signpost people to independent sources of support on how they could spend their personal budget.

Home Care Direct has come across many barriers within local authorities with regards to being on preferred or approved provider lists.  We strongly believe that people should have the full and real control to choose their service provider and that this should be made easy for them by the local authorities and professionals involved, truly embracing Personalisation.

We look forward to hearing the response to this open letter from Care Services Minister Norman Lamb and will keep you up-to-date here.