New deal for high quality, affordable home care

News from Kingston Council:

A review by Kingston Council of agencies providing care and support to people in their homes across the borough, to ensure that services are best quality and value for money, has been completed.

After a thorough assessment and tendering process, new contracts have been awarded to three companies: Alpenbest, Eleanor Nursing and Social Care, and Supreme Care Services.

All three providers are well known to the council and have worked for a number of years in the borough.

The change from the previous 23 contractors providing home care across Kingston is designed to make sure the care and support services delivered to people in their homes continues to be the best quality and the most affordable for anyone who needs them. Kingston Council spends £3.5million a year on home care services.

For people who pay towards the cost of their care, there will be a reduction in the amount that they are charged. More than 150 people will benefit.

The council evaluated responses from almost 50 companies from around the country, with the help of feedback from people about their care and a service user on the review panel.

Councillor Trevor Heap, Kingston Council's Lead Member for Adult Services, said:

"The council set the quality bar very high and a number of companies did not meet our standards. Working with a smaller number of providers will allow us to improve the quality of care and to raise standards. We will have stronger working relationships with the companies, and tougher performance monitoring to ensure that they provide high-quality services in line with Care Quality Commission standards.

"The overall cost of home care services will come down, and the council will ensure that it gets the best out of what it spends."

The council will ensure that there is no disruption to existing services so that users continue to receive high-quality care from existing providers during the transition to the new arrangements.

The council has contacted service users to let them know the outcome of the review. Anyone whose current provider has been unsuccessful will have the option to apply for a cash personal budget to stay with their existing agency.

If service users or their families have any questions they can telephone Jan Jeffcoate or Christina Lee on 020 8547 6296 or 020 8547 6297.

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