The Care Act will bring about the biggest changes seen in Adult Social Care for over 60 years.

To a greater or lesser degree The Care Act will affect all people who need social care as well as their carers, local authorities, service care providers and the wider population.

Previous areas of legislation will be brought into a single place and there will be new duties for Local Authorities. 

The main focus of the Act is to promote wellbeing. Emphasis is on supporting people to maintain their independence. The Act also concentrates on providing individuals with more choice about the care they wish to receive.

Southampton City Council is undertaking work to ensure the different parts of The Care Act will be introduced successfully. We will be working with Southampton residents, carers and our partners to make sure our services continue to meet the needs of local residents.

Other significant areas of The Care Act include:

  • people who pay for their own care will be offered support in assessing, planning and managing their care.
  • the government has created a new national eligibility threshold. This means the point at which local people become eligible for social care support is equal across the whole of the UK.
  • new rights for carers, giving them the same eligibility for services as the adults they care for.
  • the requirement of Local Authorities to provide information and advice to individuals, helping them make informed decisions about the best way they can receive care.

Some areas of the Act do not become law until April 2016. This will include funding reforms regarding a cap on care costs and changes to capital limits. More information on these areas will be released nearer the time.

The ‘Think Local Act Personal’ website provides information which helps to explain some of the language used in relation to the Care Act

The Department of Health have provided documents which give further detail about the changes the Act brings: