5. Aids and Adaptations (Equipment and Adaptions) - What must be Delegated
Local Authorities and Integration Authorities, along with other relevant partners, need to consider how the delegation of functions can best be implemented for the benefit of all individuals assessed as requiring support. Where equipment and adaptations are provided, these services, along with the resources which fund this support must be included in the integration arrangements. Related funding arrangements which do not arise from delegated functions will not fall within the remit of the Integration Authorities, however, with relevant partners, Integration Authorities should ensure alignment of their responsibilities as part of broader strategic planning in relation to housing.
In practical terms, this means that the following will change:
- The duty to assess for an adaption (as for equipment and other care related needs of adults) will be delegated to the Integration Authority. This is the work that in most cases is undertaken by occupational therapists in local social work departments.
- The planning for and resources to undertake adaptations (both under the scheme of assistance and the HRA) will be delegated to the Integration Authorities.
- The resource to fund these adaptations - including for Local Authority tenants - will pass to the Integration Authority. This means that Local Authorities will require to identify the relevant component of their overall budgets, as it relates to adaptations.
- Integration Authorities will also have powers and associated budgets delegated for the planning and delivery of advice and assistance to housing associations (RSLs) in relation to adaptations. Local authorities have rarely used this provision.
The duty to provide grants of 80% or 100% for those living in the private sector, who are assessed as needing adaptations, is still in place under the terms of the Housing (Scotland) Act 2006, and the associated Regulations: the duty is simply being delegated to the Integration Authority. Therefore, the planning for, and delivery along with the associated resource, will be the responsibility of the Integration Authorities, and will continue to be used in accordance with General capital Grant conditions. There is also still a duty to provide advice and assistance under the Scheme of Assistance for those ineligible for grant.