Formerly the Integration Transformation Fund and the Better Care Fund, the government has now issued new guidance to local authorities and Clinical Commissioning Groups up until April 2019 (see April 2017 Update below).
The previous Fund includes £354m set aside for capital purposes and the guidance explicitly refers to the £220m Disabled Facilities Grant (DFG) arrangements and the £134m annual social care capital programme (paragraphs 19-21). The new arrangements and the plans now being drawn up by local commissioning bodies will of significant interest to home improvement agencies and those involved in planning, funding and developing housing for older and vulnerable people across all tenures. Details of the DFG allocations for 2017-2019 are expected to be announced shortly.
April 2017 - Further Update
The increased funding allocations specifically for Disabled Facilities Grants (DFG) in 2017-18 have been announced (total £431million compared with £394m in 2016-17 c.10% rise).
The Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) has written to every local authority (County, Unitary, Borough and District) informing them in a DFG Grant Determination letter (opens new window) of the amount of DFG payment to each Better Care Fund and how much is included for every individual local housing authority.
The letter to all LA Chief Executives states:
‘...the DFG Grant Determination Letter now contains a condition which stipulates upper tier authorities in two tier areas must pass the DFG funding down in full to their lower tiers no later than 30th June 2017.'
The total amount of DFG funding allocated may only not be passed on in full where there is the expressed agreement of the second tier authority that the money may be used for other social care capital projects.
Both letters reiterate the key DFG clauses in the recently published 2017-19 Integration and Better Care Fund Policy Framework (opens new window), noting that further details about DFG will be provided in a forthcoming Better Care Fund Planning Requirements.
April 2017 Update
On 31 March 2017, the DH and DCLG published the Policy Framework for Integration and Better Care Fund 2017-19, which includes the total allocations for the Disabled Facilities Grant (DFG). It sets out the policy framework for the implementation of the statutory BCF in 2017 to 2019, and lists the proposals for going beyond the BCF towards further integration by 2020.
July 2015 Update
The Department of Health have published details of the £133,641 social care (capital) grant allocations for local authorities in England in 2015 to 2016.
Social care (capital) grant determination for 2015 to 2016 (opens new window)
The grant paid to a local authority under this determination is required to be transferred into the local Better Care Fund (BCF) pooled budget, under section 75 of the NHS Act 2006, and spent in accordance with a NHS England approved BCF spending plan jointly agreed between the local authority and the relevant Clinical Commissioning Group(s). In some areas, the grant could therefore support investment in specialised housing that meet local health and social care objectives.
April 2015 Update
NHS England and the LGA have informed local authorities of the amount of funding to support the provision of Disabled Facilities Grants in 2015/2016 (access the breakdown by individual authorities below)
Better Care Fund Local Authority allocations 2015/2016 (DFG = column one) (opens new window)
Following the notification of the amount of funding allocated for DFGs under the Better Care Fund for 2015/2016, Care & Repair England have published a useful briefing for anyone new to the provisions of help with home adaptations, such as Directors of Public Health; Members of Health and Wellbeing Boards; Patient and Service User representatives involve with the Better Care Fund:
Integration Briefing: Disabled Facilities Grant Funding via Better Care Funds - An Opportunity to Improve Outcomes (opens new window)
Following NHS England's notification in April of the amount of funding allocated for DFGs under the Better Care Fund, Care & Repair England have published a useful briefing for anyone new to the provisions of help with home adaptations, such as Directors of Public Health; Members of Health and Wellbeing Boards; Patient and Service User representatives involve with the Better Care Fund.
December 2014 Update
The Department of Health has set out the agreed way in which the Better Care Fund will be implemented in 2015 to 2016.
August 2014 Update
NHS England and the LGA have issued a letter (opens new window) explaining updated guidance and a new template for completion that reflects a new performance target around a reduction in the level of total emergency admissions. In addition, an accompanying allocations spreadsheet (opens new window) includes a breakdown by local authority of the minimum Disabled Facilities Grant allocations for 2014/2015 and 2015/2016.