Councils get started on checking impact of personal budgets

More than 30 councils across England have begun a process to check the outcomes that personal budgets are having on personal budget recipients and carers.

The work is happening as a result of a project that In Control is leading for Think Local Act Personal and due to grant funding from from the Department of Health to use its POET - the Personal budgets outcomes and evaluation tool.

It is becoming increasingly important for councils to gather and use real time data about the results of personal budgets - outcomes, experience and process - in addition to information about numbers. POET, which has been developed by In Control and Lancaster University, has been referenced in the Vision for Adult Social Care and ADASS personal budgets survey as a good approach and was also referenced in the newly published White Paper.

In Control has now started work with these councils to effectively check the outcomes of personal budgets. Many of these councils will be In Control members and others will come from three regions working with In Control to support the practical delivery of Think Local Act Personal (North West, Yorkshire and Humber, London)

The POET tool is used to help localities develop and improve personal budget strategies with local citizens and to be used as part of the Making it Real self-assessment and action planning process. POET enables local authorities to:

  • Review the impact that personal budgets are having on the lives of people and their families including exploring any differences across user groups
  • Explore how people are experiencing the process of self-directed support
  • Consider the factors and approaches more likely to lead to better outcomes and experiences
  • Benchmark with other authorities

Last year, the first National Personal Budget Survey utilising POET was published by Think Local Act Personal which analysed the outcomes for 2,000 personal budget holders and carers. In March 2013 a further national report will be published showing the impact that personal budgets are really having on people's lives.

Read John Water's blog post for Think Local Act Personal on POET here.

If you would like to find out more about POET, please email

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Last Updated : 21 September 2012. Page Author: Laura Bimpson.