Support planning is the process of deciding how you want to organise your care. This takes place after we have completed a needs assessment and agreed that you have eligible needs. The assessment will have calculated a sum of money, called a personal budget, to spend on your support. We use something called a Banding System to work out a planning amount as a starting point for planning your care and support.

Starting the process

We start by asking you to think about what outcomes you would like to achieve, then thinking about the best way of doing this. For example, you might want to get out and socialize more. You and your allocated worker could explore what groups and clubs are available, and look at what help you might need to attend, such as transport or assistance with personal care. You might then decide that some of your budget would be used for a taxi, and to pay for a care worker to go with you depending on how much help you need.

Your options

When you are planning your support, you will need to decide how you want your personal budget to be managed. You can ask us to arrange the support, but there are other ways of arranging services:

  • A direct payment. This is where the council pays you directly so you can buy your support yourself. You might want to consider this option if you want to use a particular agency, perhaps one that the council does not usually use. Or you might want to employ people (usually known as personal assistants) directly to help you. Please see the page on the Disability North website here for more information on this. You can also look at our information sheet: Direct payments for adults (213KB),
  • An Individual Service Fund. This is where the council pays the care provider, but expects the provider to work with you to create a care and support plan.
  • A combination of any of these. Your allocated worker can talk to you about your options in more detail.

What we agree about how you will meet your needs will be set out in a care and support plan. This will also include any information and advice we think is relevant to assist you to reduce your level of need or prevent or delay needs from developing in the future. Once your support is in place, we will carry out a review within approximately 6-8 weeks.


A review is a discussion about the help you are receiving, and of how well this help is meeting the outcomes originally agreed. This may be a face to face discussion, or it could take place over the phone, depending on circumstances. We may also discuss with you whether you are happy to carry out a review yourself - for example, if you have had care in place for some time, and everything seems to be stable, you may be happy to do this.

We have to carry out reviews to ensure that the support arranged is still working for you. We will carry out an initial review, and then we will usually contact you to arrange a review every 12 months after that.If your circumstances have changed, and you think that you need to change your care and support plan before then, please contact us to discuss your situation. You can contact us at Community Health and Social Care Direct on 0191 278 8377.

Page last updated: 
18 October 2017
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