Spending cuts to hit the disabled

By Rob George Friday 23 November 2012 Updated: 25/11 14:38

DISABLED people across Droitwich could face being cared for in residential or nursing homes after Worcestershire County Council's cabinet approved controversial spending cuts.

The authority gave the green light to its Usual Maximum Expenditure proposal which was first mooted earlier this year in a bid to save £125,000 a year.

Care in residential or nursing homes as opposed to people’s own homes could now be a realistic prospect as the county council looks to cap the amount it contributes towards the overall cost of community care packages.

The funding looks to support people with disabilities to live at home but needed to be slashed in a bid to avoid a ‘looming financial crisis’, according to the council.

Residents will now be asked to meet any additional cost of care from their own savings or choose to take funding as a direct payment which would allow them to make their own care arrangements.

The council has stressed the limit will be assessed on each individual case and will not a blanket cap and existing users will not be affected under the proposals unless their care needs changed.

Coun Philip Gretton, cabinet member for Adult Social Care, said: "This is about supporting people to live the lives they want to live, which is often in their own homes, more cost effectively, for example looking at whether direct payments or modern technology can meet people's care needs at less cost.

"We are fully committed to supporting people to live independent lives for as long as it safe for them to do so, but we have to look more and more at doing this in the most cost effective way for all Worcestershire residents who have a call on our resources," he added.

Ann Montague-Smith, chair of Worcestershire LINk, said: "The fear we have is that even the slightest changes to the current care packages will impact on the clients funding.

"There must be stability in place with the current care packages and if there are changes then people clearly know what and when those changes will happen," she added.

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