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Eligibility criteria for carers

Local eligibility criteria to ensure fair access to support for carers and young carers

What is eligibility criteria?

The Carers (Scotland) Act 2016 describes, eligibility criteria as "the criteria by which the local authority must determine whether it is required to provide support to carers to meet carers' identified needs."

If the person you care for lives in North Lanarkshire, Health and Social Care North Lanarkshire has the lead responsibility to assess your need, through an Adult Carer Support Plan (ACSP) or Young Carers Statement (YCS), although in some instances this responsibility will be devolved to Lanarkshire Carers Centre or Action for Children's Young Carers Project.

Completing an ACSP or YCS will help you identify what you would like to achieve.

Health and Social Care North Lanarkshire has prepared its eligibility criteria for carers using guidance issued by the Scottish Government.

This is based on the impact that caring has on the following aspects of your life:

  • health and wellbeing
  • relationships
  • living environment
  • employment and training
  • finances
  • life balance

The impact of your caring role is then assessed across the following, where caring:

  • has no impact on the above aspects of your life - no risk
  • has low impact - low risk
  • has moderate impact - moderate risk
  • has substantial impact - substantial risk
  • has critical impact - critical risk

These are the levels of eligibility:

No Risk or Low Risk

If your need is assessed as presenting no or low risk to you or the person you care for, we will consider how your needs can be met through services to the person you care for or what universal or community services are available to support you.

Often this is in the form of information and advice.

Moderate Risk

If your caring role presents a moderate risk, your requirements will generally be met through the existing range of supports or services provided by carers' support organisations, local community organisations and wider community resources.

Dedicated carers' support organisations provide a range of services along with organisations such as Alzheimer's Scotland or local 'condition specific' support groups.

Substantial or Critical Risk

If your need is assessed as having a substantial or critical impact on your life, then we are required by the Act to provide support to you to meet these 'eligible needs'.

This is support that cannot be provided through services for the person you care for or services that are available generally.

This type of support could be a short break paid for in part or in whole by the local authority. At this level, replacement care may be offered for the person you care for, allowing you to have a break from your caring role.

If you are in this risk section you may be offered funding through the four funding options of Self Directed Support (SDS). You might also get some of your needs met by Lanarkshire Carers Centre and other organisations.

In some cases, support may be offered to meet other identified needs that do not have a substantial or critical impact on your life. These are classed as 'non-eligible needs'.

Some examples of types of support that you may be offered
Type of support Examples
Services or assistance to the person you care for care at home technology enabled care equipment and adaptations mental health services medicine management support to access activities for children affected by disability
Other services available in your local community leisure centres / libraries / art galleries community transport lunch clubs youth clubs / education services gardening clubs / walking clubs local support groups
Information and advice carers' rights education and training income maximisation carer advocacy health and wellbeing bereavement support emergency care planning / future care planning

If your needs are identified as substantial or critical you are be eligible for direct support to enable you to continue in your caring role, such as:

  • course on emotional wellbeing
  • counselling
  • training on moving and handling
  • short breaks including replacement care for the person you care for (where this is necessary to allow you to take a break)
  • support to access leisure pursuits
  • funding through one of the self directed support options

Please remember that these supports might also be available to you even if you don't have substantial or critical need but this will be dependent on the outcomes noted in your ACSP.

Resources are limited and cannot meet every need so we need to ensure those most requiring support access supports appropriate to their needs.

Page last updated:
14 Feb 2024

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