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Question for Department of Health and Social Care

UIN 228662, tabled on 5 March 2019

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps the Government is taking to help ensure the safety of people procuring services of self-employed carers.

Answered on

13 March 2019

Many people procure the services of self-employed carers via their social care personal budget. A personal budget is an agreed amount of money allocated by a local authority to an individual receiving care, following an assessment of their care and support need.

Personal budgets enable individuals to purchase care services from a provider of their choice, in line with their agreed care plan. This may include employing self-employed carers such as personal assistants. Regulations do not require personal assistants to be registered with the Care Quality Commission. Local authorities are required to provide the level of support the individual wants when purchasing any care.

There is much advice and published guidance already available to support individuals when making decisions on procuring services of self-employed carers; for example, encouraging individuals who employ self-employed carers to consider asking for Disclosure and Barring Service checks, prior to employment. We have also commissioned Skills for Care and Think Local Act Personal to produce a range of additional support materials for those requiring care.