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Simplistically put, healthcare is free (paid for by the NHS) and social care costs are met by the individual (or the Local Authority if the individual’s finances fall below the means-testing threshold).
For your care to be fully funded by the NHS (known as NHS Continuing Healthcare or CHC), your primary need must be a health care need. If you think you may be eligible, you can contact your CCG (Clinical Commissioning Group) directly for an assessment. This will be Dorset CCG (for all residents living in the Dorset Council area).
If you are not eligible for NHS Continuing Healthcare, you may be referred to your local authority to see if you are eligible for help from them. If you still have some health needs, then the NHS may pay for part of the package of support.
If your primary need is a social care need, and you are eligible for services from your local authority, the local authority will be responsible for your care. You will then have a financial assessment carried out to find out what you may need to pay towards the cost of your care.
Most of us are used to receiving health services from the NHS – by visiting our GP or dentist or going to hospital.
Some people who have health needs may also have social care needs. If you are in need of social care support for the first time, it can be confusing trying to understand who is responsible for what care, what services you are entitled to and what has to be paid for.
The National Framework for NHS Continuing Healthcare define health care and social care needs as:
Social care needs are directly related to the type of welfare services that local authorities have a duty or power to provide. These include:
For further information, see our Information Sheets for information about Adult Social Care and support for adults in Dorset on these topics:
You can also search our Directory for organisation’s offering information and advice.
Dorset Council has taken the decision to close ‘Vocational Services’, the supported employment service for people who have a learning disability, with effect from 30 September. Previously known as ‘Stepping Stones’ the scheme has been around for many years. The service has become smaller over time, and we just haven’t been able to help enough people to get a job. When we looked at how other councils are doing, and we thought about how we wanted to help more people to get a job, it was clear that we needed to do something differently.
We know that having a job is important to many people who have a learning disability, and to lots of other people who have care and support needs. We want to help as many people as possible who are known to adult social care to get, and keep, a job. That is why we will soon be producing something new to replace Vocational Services. We will be doing this with people with care and support needs and their carers.
Over the next days and weeks will be talking to people who are using the scheme at the moment to see if they need support with their job in the meantime, and if so who could do this and how. We will update this page when we are able to tell you something about the new service.
The support officers who have worked in Vocational Services have always done their very best to help people who have a learning disability to get a job. Dorset Council is very grateful for their work, and wish them well in their futures.
Dorset Council wants people who use our services to have the best possible access to employment opportunities. That’s why in the following months we will work with a range of stakeholders to develop a new employment service that can create a wide range of opportunities for people who want to work.