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Making direct payments work: identifying and overcoming barriers to implementation

HASLER Frances, STEWART Angela
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Direct payments are a cost-effective way of delivering services to disabled people and their carers. This report explores the barriers to and successes in the delivery of direct payments, based on a project conducted in the North East of England. It concludes that a supportive local authority infrastructure, an understanding of the principles of independent living and a commitment to partnership with users are key to the success of direct payments. The authors suggest that the challenge for local authorities is twofold: to establish strategic frameworks to ensure that the systems, training, understanding, documentation and lines of communication are in place, and to actively seek partnership with users and user organisations in setting up user-led support services for direct payments.

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