Older people, people with disabilities and their carers have less than four weeks to have their say on money-saving changes to adult day services.
Oxfordshire County Council (OCC) launched its consultation at the beginning of the month over its plans to replace the county’s 22 building-based health and wellbeing centres and learning disability daytime support services with a new county-wide service with a range of costed support options. The changes are expected to save the council between £2.4 and £3.4million.
Two potential replacement options are on the table:
1 - A centre-based service delivered from eight dedicated buildings (Oxford, Banbury, Didcot, Witney, Bicester, Wantage, Abingdon, Wallingford) providing support and outreach work. The bases would provide multi-functional spaces for people, or;
2 - A mixed service provided to four geographical areas (city, north, south and west) using community facilities such as libraries, leisure centres and allotments with four dedicated buildings at Oxford, Banbury, Didcot and Witney.
It would also replace its current annual funding for 47 community-based daytime support services with two grant pots totalling £250,000 a year.
Services could bid for this under two categories: a one-off grant fund to establish new services to fill gaps in the market and a sustainability fund, a grant to enable the ongoing delivery of daytime support services in areas of high need.
Three-quarters of the community-based services do not receive funding from the county council so would be unaffected by the changes.
The council’s dementia support service will continue to be funded while its wellbeing and employment service OxForward, which provides support to people over the age of 18 with learning disabilities, autism and physical disabilities, will continue with its existing budget.
It will also continue to work with the Age UK-provided Community Information Network service.
OCC will also continue to provide a core service for people with assessed eligible needs through personal budgets, giving people a choice between voluntary sector, private sector and county council services. People have until 9am on December 20 to have their say on the changes.
A recommendation on the county council’s future of daytime support will be made by cabinet in January 2017, for a final decision by council in February. To respond to the consultation, click here.