We can assess people over 18 who have, or appear to have, an illness or a disability and may benefit from receiving care services.

In an assessment, you say what you would like to be able to do, what you have difficulty doing and what help you need.

You or someone on your behalf (such as a doctor, nurse or therapist) can ask for an assessment. If you are already known to social care services, you can ask for a re-assessment if you think your needs have changed.

There is no charge for a needs assessment.

If you are a carer, you can have a separate carer's assessment to see what help you need.

Request a needs assessment

You can complete a care and support initial assessment online quickly and easily here. It's available 24 hours a day. Once this is completed you will be able to submit your information to the care and support team who will get in touch to discuss your needs further.

AskSARA online self-assessment

You can use the free AskSARA online self-assessment tool to look into ways of helping yourself with daily activities in your own home. It is an alternative option to contacting us directly for a needs assessment.

Charges you may have to pay for social care services

You will have to pay for some social care services you receive in the community or in social care housing, but others may be free or at a reduced level, depending on your financial circumstances.

The amount you have to pay is determined through a financial assessment. Information and advice is available to help you plan for the cost of your social care.

Frequently asked questions

In an assessment, we will take details of the difficulties you have and the help you have, if any. With your permission, these details will be passed to the social care services or health team who will contact you.

If you struggle with aspects of your daily life, you may have care and support needs. Assessment is a conversation with you to build an understanding of your situation and needs.

This will involve talking to you about:

  • your own strengths;
  • what you can do for yourself;
  • what help and support is around you;
  • where you have difficulties; and
  • what are your skills, ambitions and priorities.

We will aim to protect your independence, and support you to lead, and be in control of, an ordinary and independent life as much as possible.

If you want, a friend or relative can help you with the assessment.

With your permission, we may talk to people such as your doctor, nurses or others who visit you or care for you.

Where relevant, we will check your property and equipment to make sure that anyone who works in your home can do so safely. You may be asked to make unsafe situations safe.

You will be told about the services we provide, as well as services available from other organisations.

We will regularly reassess your needs to make sure you are receiving the right support.

We give priority to meeting the needs of the most vulnerable people. We consider urgency, risk to independence and support from and for carers. 

Ensuring that the assessment is appropriate and proportionate 

Anyone is entitled to a needs assessment. When undertaking an assessment with you we will make sure that it is appropriate and proportionate to your circumstances, needs and preferences. This means that we may arrange for a qualified social worker or occupational therapist to speak to you over the telephone instead of visiting you. This format may, for example, be appropriate if you have no communication needs, your needs are not complex and you are able to express yourself by telephone.