Hull was chosen as one of the pilot areas for the development of Personal Health Budgets, and Choices and Rights work in partnership with City Health Care Partnership CIC on this scheme. The work has led to an improvement in the understanding of the needs of disabled people by health care professionals, as well as the development of good practices between the partnership of Health, Social Care and disability-led organizations. PHBs are now an automatic right for those who qualify, and we have developed (in partnership with CHCP) a comprehensive support and advice scheme for PHB users. This is an increasingly complex area, where users may require 24-hour care, personal health care, or end-of-life care, and PHBs often facilitate employing a number of Personal Assistants per person.
What is a Personal Health Budget?
A Personal Health Budget (PHB) is the result of you, or the person who represents you, having agreed a support plan which meets your health and wellbeing needs with your local NHS team. This support plan is accompanied by a budget which is also agreed between you (or someone who represents you), and your local NHS team. It is not new/extra money, but it may mean spending money differently so that you can get the care that you need.
A Personal Health Budget allows you to manage your healthcare support, such as treatments, equipment and personal care, in a way that suits you. It works in a similar way to Direct Payments, which allow people to manage and pay for their social care needs.
Who can get it?
The right to have a Personal Health Budget applies to people who are:
• adults receiving NHS continuing healthcare (NHS-funded long-term health and personal care provided outside hospital)
• people who are referred and meet the eligibility criteria of their local wheelchair service, and people who are already registered with the wheelchair service when they need a new wheelchair or specialist buggy, either because of a change in clinical needs or the condition of the current chair. These people will be eligible for a personal wheelchair budget.
• people with mental health problems who are eligible for Section 117 after-care as a result of being detained under certain sections of the Mental Health Act (this does not include detention under section 2 of the Act).
If you are not in a group that has a right to a Personal Health Budget, but you are interested in receiving one, speak to your local clinical commissioning group (CCG). CCGs make the arrangements for Personal Health Budgets and are encouraged to offer them to other patient groups. Find your local CCG.
How is your Personal Health Budget worked out?
If you are able to have a Personal Health Budget, you and your NHS team will develop a personalised care and support plan. The plan sets out your personal health and wellbeing needs, the health outcomes you want to achieve, the amount of money in the budget and how you are going to spend it.
A Personal Health Budget will not be right for everyone and it will not always be the best way to receive support. Similar to Direct Payments, you are not allowed to spend the money on gambling, debt repayment, alcohol, tobacco, or anything illegal. Emergency care, medicines, and the care you get from a GP are separate costs, and are not paid for from your PHB.
Monitoring and review
Once you have a Personal Health Budget, your NHS team will periodically review your care plan with you. You can ask your NHS team to review and update your plan because your health needs have changed, or if you feel the current plan is not working for you.
You can also give up your Personal Health Budget at any point if you wish to – you will still be able to receive care and support in another way.
Can I have a Personal Health Budget as well as a personal budget?
Yes. If you already have a personal budget for care and support from Social Care services, and your NHS team agrees, you can also have a Personal Health Budget and ask for both to be paid into the same bank account.
What is the difference between a Personal Health Budget, a personal budget, an integrated personal budget and a Direct Payment?
• A Personal Health Budget is for your NHS healthcare and support needs.
• A personal budget is for your social care and support needs.
• An integrated personal budget is for both your healthcare and support needs and social care needs.
• A Direct Payment is one way of managing any of these budgets, as the money is paid directly to you, so you can arrange/purchase the agreed care and support you need, rather than the council arranging it for you.
For more information about any of the above, please contact Choices and Rights Disability Coalition.