West Berkshire Council

Eligibility for Care and Support

How we work out if we can assist with care and support

We only have a limited amount of resources that we can use to support people with social care needs.  We're required by the government to decide how to best use the resources that we do have.  As a result, we carry out assessments to work out who is in need of the most help.

The Care and Support (Eligibility Criteria) Regulations 2014 set out a national eligibility criteria for adults needing care and support, and for carers needing support. 

Full details of what we look at when we carry out an assessment, and how we make a decision, are listed in the regulations - you can read these online.

You will be eligible if you have a physical or mental condition that has a significant impact on your wellbeing. 

You must also be unable to achieve at least two of the following:

  • Feed yourself
  • Maintain personal hygiene (keeping clean)
  • Manage toilet needs
  • Be appropriately clothed
  • Stay safe in your own home
  • Manage the housework in your home
  • See and keep in touch with friends and family and meet new friends
  • Work, volunteer or do education and training you may need
  • Make use of necessary facilities or services in the local community including public transport, and recreational facilities or services
  • Carry out any caring responsibilities you have for a child

Further information about eligibility is available on the Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE) website.

Adults needing care and support

If you're not assessed as having an eligible need, we'll still provide information, advice and agree any preventative actions to help you remain independent. This might include putting you in touch with other services, organisations and support groups.

If you're assessed as having eligible needs; we will work with you to identify solutions and agree the things we need to do to meet your requirements. We'll agree the steps with you and write them down in a detailed Care and Support plan for you. We will talk to you about paying for care.

Reviews for people in receipt of ongoing services

The aim of the review of services is to ensure that service users receive appropriate and timely packages of care to meet their individual needs, regardless of health or local authority boundaries. This review is relevant for domiciliary care, community support and all types of residential care.

The review is designed to identify any improvement or deterioration in a service user's physical, emotional and mental health so that appropriate changes can be made to address the service user's care needs. The reviewing officer may recommend a reduction or an increase in the level of care, depending on the service user's overall wellbeing and their ability to manage their essential daily living activities. On completion of a review, a support plan is completed that specifies precisely how the reviewing officer intends to address the needs of the service user.

The purpose of the review is to bring together the views of everyone who is involved with care and support to:

  • record any changes which need to be made to the information
  • consider your progress and whether targets set have been achieved
  • make sure the care and support is still appropriate for assessed needs
  • plan ahead and set new targets for the next year.

It is an important opportunity for service users, family/advocate and the local authority to put their views across to those involved in the delivery of care and support. It is also acknowledged that family representatives and/or service providers have a valuable role in the review process, so it is important for them to be involved and attend the meeting.

Transition from Childrens Services

Transition is the period of time when young people are moving from childhood into adulthood.

When a child is likely to need a service beyond the age of 18, we will work to understand what they want and need. We will provide information and advice about the range of universal support services available in the local area to help maintain independence. The conversation may include consideration of care and support needs against the adults eligibility criteria.

If a young person is eligible for care and support, further work will be undertaken to identify their care needs and develop a person-centered transitions pathway with input from all agencies. Our Local Offer provides further information about the transition process.

Carers needing support

Carers have a right to a Carers Assessment of their needs - there's a separate national carers eligibility criteria - you can read these online..

If you're not assessed to have an eligible need, we'll still provide information and advice, and put you in touch with other services and support groups that may be able to help you.

If we've assessed you as having an eligible need, we'll work with you to find ways to meet your requirements. We'll agree the steps with you and write them down in a support plan for you.

Who To Contact

Our contact centre for Adult Social Care (formerly our 'Access for All' team)

01635 503050