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Self Directed Support

Self Directed Support

Self Directed Support is a way of providing social care support that empowers individuals to have informed choice about how support is provided to them with a focus on working together to achieve individual outcomes.

Self Directed Support enables individuals to choose how their support is provided and gives them as much control as they want over their Personal Budget.

An individual’s personal budget can be:

  1. Taken as a Direct Payment,
  2. A Managed Budget (where the Trust holds the budget, but the individual is in control of how it is spent),
  3. The Trust can arrange a service, or
  4. You can choose a mixture of these options –

Image of the Self Directed Support options available 1 Direct Payment, 2 Managed Budget, 3 Trust arranges support.

How does it work?

The introduction of Self Directed Support means that once a Trust agrees that an individual needs social care support they can work together with their key worker to agree how care is provided, that best meets their assessed needs.

If the person you care for needs help to organise their support they can ask the Trust, family members or a friend to help with this.

What are Self Directed Support’s advantages?

The aim of Self Directed Support is to promote independence by offering more flexibility on how services are provided to people who are assessed as being eligible for social care support.

Self Directed Support enables people to take more control over decisions which affect their lives. It is intended to support independent living by giving people more choice, control and flexibility over their own care.

How can Self Directed Support benefit you?

Self Directed Support allows you to choose what type of support you receive and where and when you receive it.

For example you might want to:

  • Have your support staff visit at a time that you choose.
  • Employ your own personal assistant.

The Southern Health and Social Care Trust have been running a Self Directed Support pilot for a number of years.

To see how Self Directed Support could benefit you or someone you know, watch Jude’s, Ruth’s and Wendy’s stories.

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When will Self Directed Support be available?

Self Directed Support is currently being rolled out across all HSC Trusts on a phased approach.

For more information on Self Directed Support in your Trust area, please speak with your Key Worker or your Trust’s Self Directed Support Implementation Officer.

Details for your Trusts Self Directed Support Implementation Officer are at the bottom of this page.

What if you are happy with your current support arrangements?

You do not have to direct your own support if you prefer not to. You can have support arranged by the Trust, or you can have a mixed package where you direct some of your support.
Self Directed Support offers you more choice, greater control and more flexibility over the way your care and support needs can be met.

Self Directed Support Services in your area

For more information on Self Directed Support, click the links below for details of your Trust Implementation Officer or speak to your Key Worker:

Belfast Health & Social Care Trust

Northern Health & Social Care Trust

South Eastern Health & Social Care Trust

Southern Health & Social Care Trust

Western Health & Social Care Trust


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Useful Links

Centre for Independent Living NI