Care and support at home (sometimes called domiciliary care, home care or care at home) helps you stay independent by supporting you to manage many aspects of daily living including your personal care.
Domiciliary care services are provided by independent or voluntary organisations. We sometimes arrange these services, and they can prevent the need for residential or nursing care. You can view a list of companies providing domiciliary care services and their CQC rating by clicking here.
Help can vary from an hour a week to help several times a day, or a live-in service in your home. The pattern and type of service should be designed around your needs and preferences.
Care workers can also offer emotional support and encouragement.
Domiciliary care organisations providing personal care must be registered with the Care Quality Commission.
- housework and chores such as washing and cleaning
- cooking, shopping, collecting prescriptions and other tasks
- getting out and about
- getting up in the morning, getting ready for bed in the evening, and washing and bathing (personal care)
- settling back in at home following a stay in hospital
- doing exercises recommended by a doctor, physiotherapist or other health professional
- taking medication.
If you receive a direct payment from the County Council, you can employ your own care worker (called a personal assistant or PA) or make arrangements directly with a care agency. This gives you more choice in who provides services to you.
How much will the care cost?
If you are looking for care or support in your own home from a company providing personal care or a personal assistant, you could expect to pay between £15 and £35 an hour depending on the type of service. Live-in care costs can start from £800 a week, but again this will depend on your needs, the service to be provided and the company providing the service
If you are buying care privately, contact the providers direct to get more information on their charges. The booklet ‘Do I need to pay for social care in my home or local community?’ provides useful information – you can view a copy online or request a copy to be sent out to you.
Or have a look at our publication Living well in your community - your West Sussex Care Guide which provides more information on how to choose a provider and includes a list of organisations in West Sussex who provide care at home services.
When you have found a suitable domiciliary care provider, arrange an appointment for them to visit to make sure you are satisfied with everything they are offering. It may be helpful to have someone with you at the appointment, such as a relative or friend.
Things you may want to consider or ask about include:
- Reliability – Will it be the same person coming to help me? Will I be told if it is a different person or a different time that they are coming?
- Competence – What training have the staff received? Can they help me with medication or with exercises that my doctor has recommended? Can I have a copy of your last CQC Inspection Report?
- Security – Will staff be in uniform and have identity cards? Do you have public liability and employer’s liability insurance?
- Checking that I am satisfied – How will you ensure the service meets my individual needs and preferences? What notice do I have to give to cancel a visit or the whole service? How do I raise any concerns and how will you deal with them?
- Costs – What does an hour’s visit cost? Is it different at any time such as weekends or Bank Holidays? Is there a minimum time or cost that I am committed? How do I pay for the services, will you send me a bill?
When you choose your care provider they must give you, by law, their customer (or service user) pack, which will include details of what you and they have agreed, how you can make changes to the services you receive, and what to do if you are not satisfied with their service.
The care provider will also need to check, at least twice a year, that you are satisfied with the services you receive, and they will review your service with you.