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Mitchell's personal health budgets story
Mitchell is 18 years old and likes being outdoors and with his friends. He has very complex health needs that mean he is totally dependent on others. Today, more and more people like Mitchell are living at home instead of having to spend a lot of their lives in hospital.
From 2001, Mitchell's primary care trust was paying for a large package of home care from a team at the local hospital. This was very similar to hospital care. Mitchell's family felt he was 'in hospital, at home' and that they had little or no control over many parts of their lives.
In September 2008, Mitchell became one of the first people to have a Personal Health Budget. A community interest company holds Mitchell's budget on his behalf. It is used to pay for his care, staff recruitment and training and other related health outcomes.
Having a personal health budget means:
- Mitchell's family have more control over who comes into their home to care for him.
- Mitchell's support workers can get training to support his wider needs, such as supporting him with his visual impairment, not just standard training that may not be relevant to him.
- Mitchell's family can vary his care as needed, so they can take him on holiday, employ staff who share his interests and take a common-sense approach to everyday issues.
- The transition from children's to adult services was made easier, with no change in his main support team.
There was no benefit in including some parts of his care in the personal health budget, such as physiotherapy and equipment. These are provided as before.