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Assessments and referrals

What is a social care assessment?

A social care assessment is a way of exploring the difficulties you may have with day to day life and how these difficulties can be overcome.

Our priority is helping you remain as independent as possible and building on the support available to you. You may need some help or support to overcome these difficulties and we will work with you to identify how these needs could be met.

You will be assessed by someone from social services who is experienced in understanding care needs and how they can be met. If you wish you can invite a family member, friend or advocate to be with you during the assessment.  

Getting an assessment

Everyone has the right to an assessment. You can either telephone us or you can complete our online referral form .

You could use the online self assessment tool which will help you determine the areas you may require help with and also consider the suggested solutions which might help keep you independent. 

Once you have completed the online assessment we will contact you to discuss your needs or may give you suggestions on other places you could receive support from if you are not eligible for support from adult social care.

Online self assessment tool 

When will the assessment happen?

If your situation is urgent and you are in a crisis or at serious risk of harm, we will aim to see you within 24 hours. In any other circumstances we will aim to see you within 28 days. 

Do you look after someone else or does someone look after you? 

If you have a relative or friend that provides you with care and support they are entitled to a carers assessment . Or, if you provide help to somebody you will also be offered a carers assessment.

How long will the assessment take?

If your situation is urgent, for example if you are experiencing a crisis or at risk of serious harm, we will aim to see you within 24 hours. In any other circumstances we will aim to see you within 28 days or less.

The length of the assessment depends on your individual circumstances. It usually takes approximately 1to 2 hours for an initial meeting, but we may need to meet with you more than once to discuss how your needs could be met and to make any arrangements for your care and support.

What you will need to think about

As part of our assessment a care and support plan will be completed which will help us understand what is important to you, the support you already have in place and any additional support you may need. Your support plan will:

The assessment is arranged at a time to suit you and or anybody else you wish to involve in your assessment. 

You can invite a family member, friend or other advocate to be with you during your assessment and care planning if you wish. Where appropriate your allocated worker will arrange for an independent advocate to be involved to support you during the assessment process.

What help will I get from the council? 

Following your assessment we will look at whether you are eligible for care services provided by the council. 

The council has a duty to provide you with access to support and services if you have eligible needs. Eligibility for support will be assessed against the National guidance under the Care Act 2014

If you are eligible for support you will be given a Personal Budget You will choose how you want services to be provided to meet your assessed needs. 


We will arrange a review with you after the care and support is in place to check the services provided are meeting your eligible needs. We will aim to review your care and support at least every 12 months. 

If your needs or circumstances change you can contact us to request a review at any point.

Reviews may be completed either over the phone or face to face depending on your individual circumstances. 

Continuing Health Care

As part of your assessment we will consider if you may be eligible for Continuing Health Care. Where appropriate the Continuing Health Care process will be discussed with you.  The NHS may decide you are eligible for continuing health care. This means that the NHS will pay the full cost of your care which means you will not need to make any contribution. 

What you can expect from the Community Learning Disability Team

View details of the team and the roles of the team [PDF 395KB]

What happens if I am not eligible for help?

If you are not eligible for help, we will still give you information and advice  on other services that are available to help you to continue to live independently and to maintain your quality of life.

If you are not happy with the outcome of the assessment you can ask us to look at your situation again.  

If you disagree with our decision you can get in touch with us to make a comment, suggestion or complaint via our Customer Relations Team .

Sharing information about you

We will need to record information about you such as your name, address, date of birth, next of kin and details about your disabilities or illnesses and how they affect you.  We will keep your information safe and secure and process your information fairly and lawfully.

We may need to share relevant information about you with others involved in your care, such as care providers, district nurses or other council departments. 

The information about you is used to make sure the support you receive is safe and effective. We may also use your information to compile research to help us improve services and plan new ones. We may also use information you give use to prevent and detect fraud.

You should tell us if you do not wish your information to be shared. However, if we are not able to share important information about you, then this may affect how we are able to support you.