The Executive is asked to note the contents of the report, and to approve the procurement of the Shared Lives Scheme for North Yorkshire, in line with good practice as set out in the report.
County Councillor Michael Harrison introduced the report, explaining that the Shared Lives Scheme in North Yorkshire is a particularly important scheme for adults or young people from the age of 16 who need long-term support to live in the family home of an approved host family or carer. The scheme is very important to the Council.
Abigail Barron, Head of Service Development from Health & Adult Services then gave further background to the proposed procurement of the Shared Lives Scheme, with the scheme currently commissioning the incumbent provider to recruit, train and approve people to become Shared Lives carers and then to work with NYCC Social Work teams to ensure appropriate matching. The provider then takes responsibility for ensuring the placement is successful, and that any emergency short breaks or day arrangements are put in place as required. In return, the Shared Lives carer receives a payment, paid through the current provider.
The scheme currently supports 88 people with an assessed care need and is a great alternative to other care options such as supported living or residential care. It enables people to retain strong links to local communities.
A large and extensive engagement exercise has been undertaken as part of the review process, consulting with the young people involved with the scheme, Shared Lives Scheme carers and members of the public. In conclusion, it was felt that the procurement of the scheme on the open market was most likely to offer meaningful and personalised outcomes for those in need.
If approved, the proposed procurement would be for an initial term of 3 years, with an option to extend for two further periods of 1 year each, making it a potential maximum 5 year term. It is expected that there will be interest from national and regional providers following an extensive period of market testing.
In terms of the re-procured scheme, it is hoped to look to offer Shared Lives in North Yorkshire to care leavers, people fleeing domestic abuse, people with mental health issues or chaotic lifestyles and those who are homeless or seeking move-on from temporary accommodation. This would be done through a new service model, with defined outcomes and clear performance measures, so that outcomes can be tracked to ensure delivery. There is also a desire to grow the scheme across the whole of North Yorkshire to ensure it is a consistent offer across the county.
The review does not anticipate any negative impact of running the procurement for the provision already in place for service users and Shared Lives Scheme carers. The market engagement exercise does not anticipate any rising cost, but do expect it to be a cost neutral proposal.
In summary, the request for the Executive is to note the contents of the report and to approve the procurement of the Shared Live Scheme as an open market procurement.
County Councillor Janet Sanderson welcomed the report and the key transition stage that the Shared Lives Scheme supports.
Resolved – That the Executive note the contents of the report, and to approve the procurement of the Shared Lives Scheme for North Yorkshire, in line with good practice as set out in the report.