SCOPE OF THIS CHAPTER

This applies to anyone who requests social care related support from Hull City Council who appears to have a need for that support, regardless of whether those needs would appear to meet the national eligibility criteria or whether the person would be likely to be liable to pay the full cost of their care (A self funder).

This chapter was added in April 2015.

1. Principles

Assessment is one of the most important elements in the social care and support system. It should be seen as a critical intervention in its own right which can help people to understand their situation and the needs they have in order to prevent, reduce or delay the development of further needs as well as to clarify the strengths they have and how they can best use those strengths while being able to access the support they require.

The assessment must be person led and should be proportionate to the needs being presented. All assessments should use the same documentation but not all will have the same depth.

The assessment must seek to establish what needs the person has and the impact of those needs on their day to day life and overall wellbeing. It should also establish what outcomes the person wants to achieve.

An assessment can be carried out in one of three ways; the person can complete a self assessment, they can receive a supported self assessment with the support being provided by a friend, family member or anyone who knows them well or they can receive an assessment carried out by a worker from the city council.

Only after the assessment is complete can any judgement about eligibility for local authority funded support be made and only after the financial assessment can any decision be made about whether the person will be expected to pay the full cost of their care.

2. Procedure Steps

Step Action By Whom
1. When someone requests an assessment, they must be assumed to have the mental capacity to lead or participate fully in that assessment unless there are compelling reasons for believing otherwise. If those compelling reasons exist at this or at a later stage, an assessment of capacity must be carried out as set out in the Mental Capacity Act 2005. Please see 6.1 MCA guidance for detail.If the person is found to lack capacity, an Independent Mental Capacity Advocate should be appointed and any decisions made must be demonstrably in the person’s best interest. Advice and information co-ordinator/ suitably qualified mental capacity assessor.
2. Prior to the assessment taking place, the person should be provided with relevant advice and information and should be encouraged to make best use of it to help them to prevent, reduce or delay the development of further needs and to meet as many of their existing needs as possible prior to assessment. Advice and information co-ordinator
3. If the person has mental capacity but for other reasons is not able to participate fully in the assessment process, or would have substantial difficulty in doing so, consideration should be given to the appointment of an advocate. Advice and information co-ordinator/ Social worker/ social work assistant/ Occupational therapist/ sensory impairment worker
4. If the person does appear able to lead or fully participate in the assessment they should be offered the choice of completing a self assessment, having a supported self assessment or an assessment carried out with them by a worker. The self assessment paperwork is available via Hull City Council website or can be printed out and given to them. Whatever the form of assessment, the person must be given information about the assessment process. A factsheet is available via Hull City Council website which be printed and given to them. If the person completes a self assessment or supported self assessment, the worker must seek assurance that the information is accurate and comprehensive. This may entail a visit to discuss the assessment or contact with someone who knows the person’s needs such as a GP or healthcare worker but it should not entail a repeat of the assessment itself. Advice and information co-ordinator/ Social worker/ social work assistant/ Occupational therapist/ sensory impairment worker
5. The person must be informed at the beginning of the assessment process that a financial assessment will take place to determine whether the person will be expected to contribute towards the cost of their care and the level of that contribution. They must also be informed that some people will be expected to contribute the full cost of their care if they have substantial assets. Advice and information co-ordinator/ Social worker/ social work assistant/ Occupational therapist/ sensory impairment worker
6. The assessment must consider all of a person’s needs, regardless of whether or not they are being met by a carer. This ensures the local authority considers the entirety of a person’s needs and can respond appropriately if the carer feels unable to continue to provide care. Social worker/ social work assistant/ Occupational therapist/ sensory impairment worker
7. Decisions about eligibility must be made after the assessment is complete. Social worker/ social work assistant/ Occupational therapist/ sensory impairment worker
8. If the person has full mental capacity to choose, they have the right to refuse an assessment but if they do not have capacity, a decision must be made on their behalf in their best interest. If there are reasons to believe the person is experiencing or is at risk of neglect or abuse and is refusing an assessment, then the decision about whether or not to assess must be made on their behalf and in their best interest and a referral must be made to the safeguarding team. If a child living in the household or with any other connection to the person being assessed appears to have needs or to be at risk of neglect or abuse a referral must be made to the relevant childcare team. Social worker/ social work assistant/ Occupational therapist/ sensory impairment worker
9. If the person appears to have an urgent need for support, an immediate response must be provided to meet those needs and the assessment can follow subsequently. Social worker/ social work assistant/ Occupational therapist/ sensory impairment worker
10. The assessment should be proportionate to the needs and abilities of the person who is the being assessed which means that some assessments can be carried out online or over the phone while others will need the input of a specialist assessor and a range of people. People who are deafblind should always have a specialist assessor. The timescale of the assessment will vary but unnecessary delays must be avoided and the person must be kept informed of the progress of their assessment. Social worker/ social work assistant/ Occupational therapist/ sensory impairment worker
11. The assessment must use the common assessment paperwork and must be led by the person as far as they are able. It must involve the person, any carer they have and anyone else they ask to be involved. Social worker/ social work assistant/ Occupational therapist/ sensory impairment worker
12. The assessment must consider the person’s strengths and capabilities and must be focussed on the outcomes they want to achieve. It should be based around key questions:
  • How are you currently managing?
  • What is important to you?
  • What do you want to change or achieve?
  • How will you be supported?
Social worker/ social work assistant/ Occupational therapist/ sensory impairment worker
13. Once the assessment is complete, a worker must make a decision about whether the needs identified are eligible for local authority funded support. The worker should use the form attached to the assessment paperwork to do this and must send the person being assessed a copy of this to inform them in writing of the detail of the eligibility decision. Social worker/ social work assistant/ Occupational therapist/ sensory impairment worker/ Team manager
14. If it appears that the person may be eligible for Continuing Healthcare (CHC) funding, the worker must notify the relevant body and complete the CHC checklist with the person. Social worker/ social work assistant/ Occupational therapist/ sensory impairment worker/ Team manager
15. Following the assessment, the person must be given a copy of the whole document. Social worker/ social work assistant/ Occupational therapist/ sensory impairment worker/ Team manager
16. If the person is not eligible for local authority funded support, they must be provided with advice and information about what support exists in the local community or in universal services which may be of benefit to them and how to access it. They must also be provided with information about things which may help prevent, delay or reduce needs from arising. Social worker/ social work assistant/ Occupational therapist/ sensory impairment worker/ Team manager
17. If the person is eligible, the Resource Allocation System tool should be used to ascertain the amount of money which may be available to them, a financial assessment should be used and outcome focussed support planning should take place with them to enable them to design their support. Please see relevant procedures for detail. Social worker/ social work assistant/ Occupational therapist/ sensory impairment worker/ Team manager