On 1 April the Social Care (Self-directed support) (Scotland) Act 2014 came into force. Self-directed support (SDS) is a way of providing support that means people are given choice and control over what kind of support they get.

People can choose and arrange some or all of their own support instead of having it chosen and arranged by their local authority.

SDS will also be extended to unpaid carers, so that they can have choice and control over support that will help them with their caring role. The introduction of SDS for carers is a big step forward in recognising carers as equal partners in care and expert providers of care – they will be able to choose support for their caring role that is delivered in a way to suit them. Many carers will also have a role in helping the person they look after to choose and control their own support.

Carers Trust Scotland has been working with the Scottish Government to develop a guide for carers on self-directed support, whether they are interested in accessing SDS for themselves or helping someone they look after to access this kind of support. You can download this guide, and other guides about SDS, from the Self-directed Support: National Guides website.