An introduction to using direct payments for one-off purchases
A one-off purchase may be the key to meeting well-being outcomes.
This may be instead of or in addition to buying an ongoing service.
For example, buying a bike to enable a person to get out and about if they find walking hard, or buying a set of garden tools to be able to spend time gardening.
Case study: how Cathy used direct payments to buy a washer/dryer
Parent-carer Cathy needed to buy a large washer/dryer to cope with the high wash loads of bedding and clothes needed for her son.
The social worker felt that this was an appropriate use of direct payments.
Initially, the local authority were trying to present the cost of the washing machine as an hourly rate equivalent in order to approve the purchase which led to confusion, delays and frustration.
Flexibility needed to be built in and this involved working with the Finance Department to create a system that could accommodate one-off purchases such as this without undue bureaucracy.
The washer-dryer made a great difference for Cathy. She was able to spend less time dealing with the washing which gave her more time to do things she needed for herself.
Case study: how a laptop helps meet David's well-being needs as a carer
David cares for his wife who has dementia. He worries about her and does not like leaving her on her own.
That’s a problem as he struggles to do the weekly grocery shopping. Not only does this create practical problems but it has left him feeling isolated.
The solution was to purchase a laptop computer with a direct payment.
David can now do a supermarket shop on-line and it is delivered. He can also Skype his daughter who lives a long distance away.