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New DFG system in Somerset opens up adaptation jobs to more providers

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A new system is being brought in by councils in Somerset to make it quicker for disabled people to have adaptations made to their homes.

The disabled facilities grant (DFG) provides funding of up to £30,000 to residents who can use the money to adapt their homes, including installing wheelchair ramps, stairlifts and adapted bathrooms.

Currently, Aster Housing has a contract to provide installs for four councils in Somerset but from next month the services will be brought in-house and commissioned out on a case-by-case basis, according to a local newspaper report.

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It is hoped that dishing out jobs in this way will cut installation times by up to 10 weeks.

The new system was discussed by Sedgemoor District Council’s executive committee last week where strategic housing manager David Baxter said delays in the past had been caused by a long communication line between the council, OTs and Aster Housing.

He told Somerset Live: “There has been a lot of work going on behind the scenes to get us to this point.

“It is about making the service more efficient. Doing this will reduce waiting times from 22 weeks down to 16 or maybe even 12 weeks from first asking to getting the equipment in.”

It is hoped that the changes will ease pressure on social care in the area and Mr Baxter added that helping older people to live independently for longer will reduce costs.

Tags : adaptationcouncildfgdisabled facilities grantSomerset
Joe Peskett

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