New report highlights important role for Disabled Facilities Grants
Written by Sheila Mackintosh and Philip Leather for Foundations and with input from Care & Repair England, this comprehensive report concludes that there is real potential for using Disabled Facilities Grants (DFGs) help to reduce hospital admissions, cut care costs, delay the move into residential care and speed up hospital discharge.
The report includes an in depth analysis of the origins of DFG, trends in its use since its inception plus potential future.
The authors conclude that “The accessibility of the home is finally being recognised as important for successful hospital discharge, to enable care to take place at home, and to allow people to live independent lives… it is possible to join up the previous disjointed pathways and link the DFG to other related health and care services in a way that will make much more sense to customers. Rather than standing alone as a single solution it can be part of a more holistic range of interventions to help older and disabled people remain independent at home.”
New Briefing about the Better Care Fund & Home Adaptations
Our new Integration Briefing, Innovation in home adaptations – a fresh chance considers how the substantial increase in national funding for home adaptations offers opportunities to improve integration and meet performance targets, particularly reducing delayed transfers of care.
Backed by Public Health England, Integration Briefing 3 explains the connections between Disabled Facilities Grant finance, this year’s new Better Care Fund Policy Framework and the interests of Public Health & the NHS.
The Briefing will be particularly useful for anyone involved in related service planning including Directors of Public Health; Members of Health and Wellbeing Boards; Local Councillors; Patient and Service User Representatives; and all those involved in the field of home adaptations. [June 2016]
Local Government Ombudsman report urges action to improve home adaptations delivery
People with disabilities are being left for too long in unsuitable homes because of problems with councils’ Disabled Facilities Grants (DFG) processes is the conclusion of the Local Government Ombudsman (LGO).
In a new report, Making a house a home: Local Authorities and disabled adaptations: Focus report: learning lessons from complaints [add hyperlink http://www.lgo.org.uk/downloads/special%20reports/2314-FR-DFG-final-17.03.2016.pdf the LGO highlights some of the DFG complaints it has received and notes the significant impact that delivery shortcomings can have on disabled people’s lives.
The report includes good practice guidance to local authorities and also offers elected members questions they can ask to scrutinise local grants processes. [March 2016]
The Care Act, Better Care Funds and Home Adaptations– An Opportunity to Improve Outcomes?
Care & Repair England has published a second Integration Briefings which explain the changes, clarifies responsibilities and highlight opportunities for integration resulting from the Care Act.
This follows a first Integration Briefing about payment of funding for Disabled Facilities Grants through the Better Care Fund.
These reports were supported by Public Health England are particularly useful for anyone relatively new to provision of help with home adaptations such as Directors of Public Health; Members of Health and Wellbeing Boards; Patient and Service User Representatives, as well as those involved in their delivery who wish to keep up to date.
Local authorities are informed of the amount of funding that they are due from national government to support provision of DFGs in 2015-16 – Here is the link to the table which sets out the amount for each locality.
New report from Leonard Cheshire’s No Place Like Home campaign
In the third of a series of campaign reports, the national charity Leonard Cheshire Disability highlight the pressures on health and social care that result from a lack of disabled friendly homes.
In ‘‘The real cost of the lack of disabled-friendly homes’, the key findings are:
- The lack of disabled-friendly homes is placing intolerable pressure on health and care services across the UK;
- Over the past month at least 15,000 hours of GP time have been taken up with disabled or older people who had suffered injuries, illness or other health problems because of an inaccessible home;
- Some GPs (22 from our survey) had more than 20 appointments for health problems caused by inaccessible homes in the last month; and
- One third (35%) of Leonard Cheshire Disability service managers say that there is at least one person living in their care service who would like to live in their own home, but is unable to do so because there is nowhere accessible for them to live.
Earlier reports are:
- No place like home
- The hidden housing crisis
All are freely downloadable from this webpage
Briefing (Oct 13) from Care & Repair England about the Implications for DFG of the new Integration Transition Fund. See Care & Repair England Briefing on Integration Transformation Fund Oct 13
Adapting for a Lifetime report on the role of Home Improvment Agencies in supporting home adaptations, Foundations (2010)