Self-directed Support : my support, my choice: your guide to social care

A guide to help you if you are getting social care support or if you are thinking of getting support

Appendix: Jargon Buster

Assessment The process of working out what your needs are and how you would like them to be met. It should involve you, a professional (such as a social worker) and other people that you choose to help you, such as a family member.
Broker A person whose job it is to provide you with advice and information about what services are available in your area, so that you can choose to purchase the care and support that best meets your needs.
Direct payment The council pay money directly to you and you arrange your own support by employing care staff or buying services from one or more organisations.
Eligibility criteria The council's rules on who can get support. The rules are based on the level of risk to a person if they do not get support.
Independent advocate An independent advocate is a person who could help you to have a stronger voice when speaking with your council. An independent advocate will help you get the information you need to make real choices about your support.
Independent living Independent living means all disabled people having the same freedom, dignity, choice and control as other citizens at home, at work and in the community. It does not mean living by yourself or fending for yourself. It means rights to practical assistance and support to participate in society and live an ordinary life.
Individual budget Money that is allocated to you by your local council to pay for care or support to meet your assessed needs. The way the budget has been decided should be clearly explained by the professional working with you. You should be given the chance to agree the budget before the support plan is put into action.
Outcomes Personal outcomes - defined by the person as what is important to them e.g. It is the difference or positive impact any support plans or intervention have on a person.
Personal Assistant A person who provides support to you who you directly employ through a direct payment (option 1).
Personalisation A way of thinking about support which puts you at the centre of the process of working out what your needs are, choosing your support and having control over your life. Self-directed support is an example of personalisation.
Professional working
with you
A professional who works with you and your family to help improve your life by arranging to put in place the things you need. This is often a social worker from a council but it can sometimes be a professional from the NHS, such as a nurse or therapist.
Resource Allocation System A Resource Allocation System is a means of deciding how much money people are entitled to, to be able to purchase he support they need.
Risk assessment An assessment of the risk to your health, safety, wellbeing in a particular situation.
Support organisation This is a person or organisation that helps you access, plan and maintain the support you need. This could include assistance with assessment, information on SDS, advice, support in using individual budgets or other forms of SDS and support in recruiting and employing personal assistants and payroll.
Support provider The person or organisation that gives you the support you need. It could be:
  • An organisation that provides staff and other support to you (sometimes people call these care providers or care agencies).
  • A personal assistant that you employ to support you
  • The council or the NHS
  • Or any organisation that provides a service that could help you


Email: Hetaher Palmer

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