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The law says we need to assume that anyone aged 16 or over can make decisions for themselves, with support if needed, unless we have evidence they cannot do this. If you are not able to make your own decisions and we have to take action on your behalf, we will only do this if it is in your best interests. If a best-interest decision is needed, we will discuss your needs with anyone who has a valid power of attorney. This means someone who is legally allowed to make specific decisions for you and act on your behalf. If the Court of Protection has authorised someone to act on your behalf, we will work closely with that person to make sure that any decisions that are made about your care and support are in your best interests.
Carers look after family, partners or friends who need help because they are ill, frail or have a disability. They do not get paid for the care they provide, and they do not always live with the person they care for. You have a legal right to be recognised as a carer. So, if you think you are caring for someone who could not manage without your help, please get in touch with our Adults’ CarePoint to see if we can help. Please see our contact details on the 'Contact us' page. Also see ‘Family and friend carers’.
All organisations that provide NHS or social care services must meet the Accessible Information Standard which came into effect on 31 July 2016. The standard sets out the approach that organisations must use to make sure that people with disabilities can get information in formats that they can understand. The standard also tells organisations how to support people’s communication needs, for example, by offering a British Sign Language interpreter, a deaf-blind interpreter or an advocate (someone to help you have your say).
Any organisation that is providing you with an NHS or social care service must do the following five things.
• Ask you if you have any communication needs
• Record your needs
• Highlight your needs very clearly on your records
• Share the information about your needs with other social care or NHS providers as part of any referral or handover process
• Meet your needs by making sure you get the information you need in a format that you can understand, and that you receive any communication support you need.
We are committed to helping people find the support that best meets their needs, and our staff will offer advice and help to everyone living in West Sussex. However, there are some things we do not do. If this is the case, there are other organisations that can help you.