May 27, 2010 -- Able Newsflash No.221

Care News

I mentioned this a few weeks back but several calls to this office have shown that many people are not aware of the changes to the Independent Living Fund.

From 1st May this year the criteria for receiving funding has changed. Applicants seeking support will need to be in the position of having to be employed for 16 hours or more per week. For further details visit the website of the ILF at:

Tory-Lib Dem Coalition Policies include:

Ban on foreign health professionals working in the NHS unless they have passed "robust" language and competence tests.

A Commission will be set up re. long-term care and it will report within a year.

The winter fuel allowance, the free TV licences, free bus travel, free eye tests and free prescriptions for elderly people will all be maintained.

There will be a re-assessment of all claimants on Incapacity Benefit for readiness to work - those deemed capable of work will be moved on to Jobseeker's Allowance. (Last year, there were over 2.4 million people aged between 18-64 claiming Incapacity Benefit. Of those, over 80% were claiming for more than 6 months and 40% claiming for more than 5 years)

The star ratings which were awarded to care providers by the Care Quality Commission will cease with the implementation of the new system for registering and inspection. The current system of star ratings has been criticized as being inconsistent relative to where and who carried out the inspection.

A consultation is being launched but a final decision on how the quality of care services will be recognised is not expected until at least April 2011.

In-House News

Prospective clients have been visited this week in Nottinghamshire, Somerset and Bromley.

4 Care Managers have attended a training course on The Mental Capacity Act.

A team meeting has been carried out in Kent and a client review in Norfolk.

Two new posts have commenced in:

One of our clients died this week. Care cover had been continuous since 2002.

Interesting Information / Statistics

Question of the Week
"What are Taxicards? How can I get one?"

Answer : Taxicards are provided to people who cannot use public transport because of a permanent disability.

If you are in receipt of the Higher Rate Mobility component of the Disability Living Allowance, or if you are registered blind or receive a War Pension Mobility Allowance you are automatically entitled to a Taxicard.

In some circumstances you may be able to have a Taxicard if you do not have the above but this would be based on an assessment of your mobility.

The Taxicard pays an amount towards a limited number of trips in licensed taxis and you do not pay the full metered fare. The discount offered and the cost of the maximum journey before you have to pay extra may differ from local authority to local authority, so for further details ring your local Council.

The UK has a good record for road safety compared with most other EU countries. In 2006 it had one of the lowest road death rates in the EU, at 5.4 per 100,000 population. The UK rate was also lower than the rates for other industrialised nations such as the United States (14.3 per 100,000 population), Australia (7.8 per 100,000 population) and Japan (5.7 per 100,000 population).

Devon has 354 residential care homes compared with 53 in Oxfordshire.

We hope you have enjoyed reading this and "see you next week".

Best Wishes,
Angela Gifford, Proprietor
Able Community Care.