SUPPORT for adults with learning disabilities in Monmouthshire is to be reviewed after the service was overhauled during the Covid pandemic.
The lockdown had resulted in the closure of all the council’s hub buildings where its My Day, My Life support service had operated from.
The programme, provides daytime support intended to help people to live how they wish in the community, and has been running since 2014. Though it was intended to offer bespoke tailored support, rather than just providing a day centre, it was still based within four hub buildings in Abergavenny and Monmouth.
In the south of the county the charity Mencap runs the service under contract from the council.
But officials say as all four hubs, at Tudor Street and the Melville Theatre grounds in Abergavenny and the Monmouth and Monnowvale hubs, had to close at the start of the pandemic it has sought to rethink how the service is provided.
It says since the pandemic the shift to a community-based service has “led to several positive changes” including that those people in supported living or residential homes are “now enjoying bespoke activities of their choice supported by a consistent and familiar care staff who support them at home and in their local community.”
But it says while a majority of those who respond to a consultation as part of the review may wish to see a further move to community services without needing a building it could negatively impact those with more complex needs as they, or their families, may prefer being able to access a permanent base.
The council says this will require “effective engagement” to mitigate the risk.
It also says the review may “create anxiety and uncertainty for individuals using the service, their families and the staff team” and warns that it could lead to identify the need for a “smaller or different” team which would impact on the current, predominantly female staff.
It is to appoint an independent consultant to review the Abergavenny and Monmouth services while council officials will review the service provided by Mencap following the completion of the independent review of the service it provides directly.
It has budgeted £27,000 for the review which is expected to require 37 days work which will include engagement with staff, individuals using the service and other stakeholders.