Section 34 – How to meet needs
114.Once a local authority has determined it is going to meet a person’s needs and is considering what could be done to meet those needs, it can seek to meet those needs in a number of ways. Unlike the current legal framework, the Act does not specify the provision that local authorities may or must provide.
115.Section 34 sets out examples of what may be provided to meet a person’s needs and examples of the ways in which it may meet a person’s needs. The examples include aids and adaptations and payments, including direct payments. Local authorities can also decide whether to provide services itself or to arrange for the services to be provided by someone else. A person’s needs could also be met by providing services to another person, for example providing support to the family of a child in order to meet the child’s needs for care and support.
116.Where a local authority is supporting someone’s needs by providing or arranging care and support in that person’s own home, the local authority must satisfy itself that the visits to the home are of sufficient length to provide the care and support required. A code on the exercise of social services functions, issued by Welsh Ministers under section 145, will include guidelines on the lengths of visits to people’s homes.
117.There are some limitations on what a local authority is able to do to meet a person’s needs. These are set out in sections 47 to 49.