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Big Changes On The Way To Adult Social Care In Dorset

Elderly Care

Published at 6:50am 24th October 2014.

Major changes are on their way to Adult Social Care in Dorset after the County Council voted to transform the service.

They are responding to an increasing demand from an aging population and government cutbacks to their funds.

The move will see the Council create a ‘Local Authority Trading Company’, which they say they use to make money out of the service and balance the books.

Cllr Jill Haynes, the Council's Cabinet member for adult social care, said; "I am delighted that Cabinet have taken the decision to proceed with our LATC plans. We don't want to sell off our care services, and the implementation of this new organisation will allow the council will retain control of these.”

“We will also be able to offer them to the wider community and ensure our high standards of care are maintained and safeguarded by the same excellent and highly valued staff that are providing our services now."

There will be a further decision in December on whether to proceed with plans to make the LATC 'pan-authority', which would include adult care services in Bournemouth and Poole.

Catherine Driscoll, director for adult and community services at the county council, added:

“Current service users will continue to receive their care at the same locations from the same people in the manner they have become accustomed to. But a LATC will allow Dorset County Council to develop these services for the future, while making sure our staff can continue to do an excellent job with a renewed focus on how we can best provide care for those who need it.”

How will the LATC Work?

Unlike the county council, a Local Authority Trading Company is an organisation which has the ability to trade. It will be able to deliver services to more people in need of social care support, including those who receive a direct payment, informal carers, and those who fund their care privately.

The ability to raise income from self-funders will enable savings to be achieved from the current budget. Any extra revenue generated can be returned to the LATC to provide further services, or be reinvested back into the council.

The LATC will have shareholdings, but the council will hold 100 per cent of these shares without providing any financial subsidy. Dorset County Council will retain strategic control of the LATC through the formation of an Executive Stakeholder Group, which will include five council members, including the Cabinet member for adult social care, director of adult and community services and chief financial officer. This will ensure that the LATC will retain the high standards of service quality that users currently enjoy.

Council staff working in adult social care and support will be transferred over to the new organisation with their existing pay, terms and conditions intact, while current service users will continue to enjoy the same excellent care from the highly valued staff they are familiar with.

Adult social care provider services within scope of the LATC include:-
• Care catering services - Providing monitoring, training, policy guidance and intensive support to all adult services establishments.
• Residential services - Including both residential care homes and care homes with nursing.
• Day care services
• Reablement services - Intensive short term home care.
• Shared lives - Providing adult placements within the homes of self employed host carers
• Community employment - Including the Oh Crumbs! service offering people with a disability the chance to develop work skills and experience.

You can read more about the proposed Local Authority Trading Company at https://www.dorsetforyou.com/latc

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