A care needs assessment is a way for Suffolk County Council (SCC) to work out how much help your parent may need and point them towards the relevant services for this care.
A financial assessment can also be carried separately out to establish whether or not your parents will have to pay for the care they receive from SCC.
Caring for someone can be tough, especially if they require a lot of support. Although you may not define yourself as a carer, Suffolk council may still able to offer you support, advice and information. You can find out more about a Carer’s Assessment, and a list of carer support services Age Space has compiled, at our dedicated Carer Support in Suffolk page.
How to apply for a Care Needs Assessment with your local authority in Suffolk
You will need to apply for a Care Needs Assessment through Suffolk County Council. It is possible to apply directly for the one-to-one needs assessment through the contact information detailed below, however, it is recommended that you first complete a quick 10 minute online self-assessment.
The self-assessment will give an idea of:
- The care or support needs your parent/relative has
- Equipment and services that could help them stay at home for longer
- Community groups, clubs, and activities to help maintain their health and independence
- Whether they might be eligible for financial support from the council for any care costs
When you finish, it will advise you as to whether or not they would benefit from a full assessment of their care needs. If this is the case, a trained official from the council, or from Suffolk Family Carers (as they carry out care assessments on behalf of the council), will come round to talk more in depth about your loved one’s personal care needs.
If you already get some support from your doctor or a neighbour you might like them to also be included in the conversation. The assessment will consider:
- strengths, needs and what outcomes your parent wants to achieve
- what help and support in place or could have from the people in the community around you
- the things they may need some support with to keep well and independent
- Physical needs, e.g. any help they need to wash, dress, or get in/out of bed
At the same time it’s possible to get a financial assessment to see how much the council will put towards the care. Unlike NHS services, support and care from the Local Authority is generally means tested.
Who pays? – A financial assessment
Suffolk County Council offers a full guide on paying for social care, however we will provide a brief summary for you. SCC also provides a Care Cost Calculator for you to see whether your loved one might be eligible for funding.
- You will be given an AF1 form to send to the council once completed
- If your relative has over £23,450 in savings or capital (excluding the value of their property if they require non-residential care) they will not be eligible for funding
- There are some exceptions as to whether the value of your home is included in your assessment if you are moving into a care home – these are listed in the full guide.
- Decline a financial assessment the council will assume that they have over £23,450 in savings
- Even if your relative is not eligible, SCC is still able to help organise the care
- Payment for care services can be via direct debit + £8 admin fee per month
If you have any further questions about the financial assessment, ring or email one of the two contacts depending on where your parent plans to receive their care.
Planning to live at home:
Telephone: 01473 264544
Moving into a care home:
Telephone: 01502 673530
A Carer’s Assessment
Suffolk County Council can also assess the carer’s needs. It’s an opportunity to talk to someone about how you feel with responsibilities that come with being an unpaid carer. The council may be able to put you in touch with services that can support you in your role as a carer.
For more information on carer assessments and the support available to you in Suffolk, visit Age Space’s dedicated page on Suffolk Carer Support.