Is there any interest in creating a discussion “Group” to share information and ideas around the personal budgets and direct payments agenda as this is of interest to PEN providers although not a specific theme of any of the sub groups?
if you select the ‘groups’ option (top right hand corner there is a tab marked ‘Groups’) and you will see a list of groups. There will be a button that you can click by each group requesting membership. If you click the ones you are interested in joining I iwll approve them later today. There are discussion forums in each group as well as the ability to message other members. We have to set the approval method for these to ensure that the people who are joining are genuinely interested in each group and not spammers (we have had a couple of them already!)
We will be very happy to join in a discussion about personal budgets and direct payments and how that can help to shape the market place once people can vote with their feet.
Examples of this not being possible for the people we support to choose life styles where their money is locked into existing services would be really good please.
Example. If they use in-house daycare but choose not to always attend , how can that money be flexiBly used so they can do something they want on that day. We generally pay for services taken, and do not have to decide 12 months in advance if we want to go out for coffee every Tuesday each week.
Services that provide day care etc will go out of business if the customer does not pay the fee agreed and staff will move on if not paid for their services. Having said that the customer will indeed be able to vote with their feet although the may well find choice of alternatives will not be forthcoming as business moves to a more stable market.
The secret for providers will be in their marketing and their flexibility to respond to changing purchasing patterns, but I am sure it will not be too long before providers (PA’s or services) will contract with individuals for services purchased in advance in order to budget staff etc..