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About the Care Act

On 1 April 2015 the changes to information, advice, carer support and support for people with care needs came into force.

The Act introduces a major set of reforms to the way that care for elderly people and other adults with care needs is provided and paid for. It is part of a bigger push to reform both social care and health, and improve the way all parts of the system work together.

Delay of cap on care costs

The aspect of the legislation which received most attention in the press was the introduction of a cap on the amount that anyone can be required to pay for their care and support in their lifetime.

Since then, the government has announced that they are delaying the introduction of the cap on care cost until 2020. The Department of Health said it is still " firmly committed " to the cap.

The Care Act 2014 is built around people, it:

  • ensures that people's well-being, and the outcomes which matter to them, are at the heart of every decision that is made
  • puts carers on the same legal footing as those they care for
  • creates a new focus on preventing and delaying needs for care and support, (rather than intervening at crisis point), and on building on the strengths in the community
  • embeds rights to choice, through care plans and personal budgets, and ensures a range of high quality services are available locally

The Care Act 2014 makes care and support clearer and fairer, it:

  • extends financial support to those who need it most
  • provides for a single national threshold for eligibility to care and support
  • supports people with information, advice and advocacy to understand their rights and responsibilities, access care when they need it, and plan for their future needs
  • gives new guarantees to ensure continuity of care when people move between areas, to remove the fear that people will be left without the care they need
  • includes new protections to ensure that no one goes without care if their provider fails, regardless of who pays for their care

Department of Health summary document

Guidance - Care Act part 1 factsheets

Consultation outcome: updating our care and support system - regulations and guidance

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