Home care changes: People will benefit

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I write in response about two recent articles in the Chad and Dispatch about the retendering of Nottinghamshire County Council’s homecare contracts.

I understand the concerns that have been raised from local service users about the reduced number of care providers contracted by the Council to provide home care services.

However, I would like to reassure people who use these services that there will be many benefits with these changes.

Firstly, having a smaller number of providers will mean we can work closer with these organisations to ensure that they are offering excellent standards of care to our residents.

We currently have 26 different home care providers and they are able to choose where they operate.

This means that there are some gaps in certain areas of the county where it is difficult to deliver the home care support that people need.

This problem will be greatly reduced by our new contracts which will mean that the provider will be required to deliver services in the whole area within their allocated district.

Providers have told us that arranging the contracts in this way will be easier for them to recruit staff from the local area.

The range of home-based care services will actually be expanded to include quicker response times and planned night time care. Services will be arranged in ways that best meet the needs of the people who use the services and they will have more choice and control about how the services are delivered.

People concerned that they could lose their care worker should seek some assurance that staff working for unsuccessful providers will have the option to transfer to one of the new providers.

Above all, a reduced number of care providers contracted by the Council will not mean a reduced level of service. We are making these changes to offer a better standard of service at a time when demand for home care is on the increase.

Councillor Muriel Weisz

Chairman of Nottinghamshire County Council’s Adult Social Care and Health Committee

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