COVID Update – Care Packages

Page updated on Friday 13th August. 

As we emerge from lockdown, there have been significant increases in demand for home care and support services, particularly those for people with complex needs. There have also been staff shortages, with some staff having to self-isolate.

As a result, Falkirk Health and Social Care Partnership is asking families for their support to deliver care to more people.  Along with service users, families, and carers we will review packages of care to identify if we can temporarily reduce a package where is it safe to do so, with their agreement. This will ease pressure and help ensure those with critical care needs receive the support they need.

The Partnership is writing to those currently receiving a package of care, or their representative, to advise of the urgent need to prioritise care capacity to meet the needs of those whose care needs are assessed as being the most critical.

Everyone currently receiving care, or waiting to be assessed for a care package, will have the opportunity to review their individual circumstances with a worker from the Health and Social Care Partnership.

Further updates and information will be made available on this page. If you cannot find the information you are looking for below, please contact your local social work office on 01324 506 070.

We recognise that informal carers; family and friends, have worked tirelessly throughout the pandemic. The safety and well-being of all involved is of paramount importance and we will continue to support those informal carers wherever possible.

These temporary challenges are being faced across the country, and we are extremely appreciative of your understanding during this time. We continue to take all necessary action to ensure the delivery of safe and effective care.

Patricia Cassidy
Chief Officer


Why have these temporary changes been made?

To continue a safe and appropriate level of care for everyone, we have made the difficult decision to prioritise care provision.

Due to the current level of coronavirus cases across the country, we now have a large number of care staff self-isolating in line with national guidance. As the economy recovers, we also have staff moving back to jobs they held before the pandemic. In addition, we continue to receive a high demand for new packages of care.

Our reduced staff capacity has already affected the care we can provide. For example, in July 2020 we had just 10 people waiting for care. In July 2021, there were 141 people with an unmet care need. We must ensure people with critical needs receive the immediate and urgent care they need.

We have looked at lots of options to ease workforce pressures before deciding to review and reduce some care packages. These options included increased overtime opportunities for staff and discussing the additional resources available from our partner agencies.

How long will these temporary changes last?
While we anticipate this will be a temporary challenge, we are not in a position to say when a full package of care will be available for you.

It may take several months to increase the number of care packages sufficiently to meet the requests we have.

How will my care be reviewed?
How will my care be reviewed?

Your local case worker will be in touch to discuss and review your care shortly. No changes to your care will be made prior to these being discussed with you.

If you are concerned about what these measures may mean for you, please contact your local social work office on 01324 506070.

How do you decide who has ‘critical needs’?

To make sure our decisions are fair, everyone has to meet a set of national conditions, called eligibility criteria. The criteria helps us to identify the people who are at the greatest risk.

If the risks to your personal safety and maintaining your independence are high, we will discuss with you what services you need.

If these risks are lower, for example if you are having some difficulties with your daily living, we will give you information and advice.

The eligibility criteria has four levels, defined by the Scottish Government. Our reduced capacity means we can only provide care if your needs are identified as ‘Critical’.

Critical criteria includes: An assessment indicates there are major risks to an individual’s independent living or health and wellbeing likely to need immediate or imminent provision of social care services. Immediate or Imminent means it is required now or within 1-2 days.

More information about how we assess your care needs can be found on the Falkirk Council website:

How will I know if this affects me?

You will be contacted by your local case worker in the coming days/weeks to arrange a discussion. No changes to your care will be made prior to these being discussed with you.

Any reduction in care will be temporary, unless your review identifies your needs have changed or can be met in a different way.

In some circumstances, we may identify a need for additional support, and we will work to put that in place as soon as possible.

If you are concerned about what these measures may mean for you, please contact your local social work office on 01324 506070.

Where can I access extra help?
You can discuss your needs and wants with your local case worker, who will work with you to identify appropriate and useful services and organisations which may help you. These resources may also provide useful information: