National Assembly for Wales / Cynulliad Cenedlaethol Cymru
Health and Social Care Committee / Y Pwyllgor Iechyd a Gofal Cymdeithasol

The Care and Support (Eligibility) (Wales) Regulations 2015/ Rheoliadau Gofal a Chymorth (Cymhwystra) (Cymru) 2015

Evidence from Sense Cymru – CSR 03 / Tystiolaeth gan Sense Cymru – CSR 03


Care and Support (Eligibility) (Wales) Regulations 2015: Sense Cymru evidence


1.    Sense Cymru welcomes the opportunity to give evidence to the Health and Social Care Committee on the Care and Support (Eligibility) (Wales) Regulations 2015. Sense Cymru is a member of the Social Care and Well-being Alliance Wales (SCWAW) and endorses the evidence submitted by this alliance.


2.    Sense Cymru is the national charity that supports and campaigns for deafblind children and adults. We also support those who have a single sensory loss with an additional need.


3.    Sense Cymru broadly welcomes the proposed approach to determining eligibility as set out in the Care and Support (Eligibility) (Wales) Regulations 2015, the accompanying ‘Explanatory Memorandum’ and the draft Code of Practice on Meeting Needs, subject to minor amendments.


4.    We strongly welcome the approach to determining eligibility that does not determine eligibility on the level of need (as in the current system where needs are either ‘low’, ‘moderate’, ‘substantial’ or ‘critical’) but on the basis of an individual’s ability to meet their personal well-being outcomes. This model of determining eligibility puts the individual’s needs at the heart of the process rather than eligibility criteria being used as a tool solely to ration financial resources.


5.    We welcome the intention to support low level needs where these can and can only be met through the preparation and delivery of a care and support plan. Meeting low level needs is in line with the Act’s preventative agenda and, if these low level social care needs are met before they escalate, the cost of meeting these needs is substantially lower than meeting higher level needs further down the line.


6.    Whilst we are keenly aware that financial considerations must play a part in reforming the social care system in Wales, we are concerned to ensure that decisions about a person’s outcomes and eligible needs in relation to those outcomes should precede decisions by the local authority about the budget apportioned to meeting those needs.


7.    We welcome the inclusion of the ‘ability to communicate’ as a recognised need which meets the eligibility criteria for children, adults and carers in the regulations. Deafblindness affects a person’s ability to communicate and therefore taking account of person’s communications ability and method of communication is crucial in making sure that they get the care and support at the right time in the right place.


8.    Whilst we welcome the move towards a consistent eligibility threshold across Wales, we would stress that geography and location will necessarily be bound up in the determination of eligibility under the proposed system and could lead to differences across Wales. For example, the availability of preventative community services and the local transport infrastructure in any given area will affect whether a person is able to meet their outcomes independently or will be eligible to have their needs met by the local authority’s preparation and delivery of a care and support plan.