Freedom of information request response - 05783

FOI request

FOI ID number
Better Care Fund (BCF)

Carers UK is conducting a review of how breaks for carers are funded through the Better Care Fund (BCF).

As your Local Authority will be aware, clause 36 of the Better Care Fund planning guidance for 2017-19 states the following:

"Former Carers' Break Funding - The CCG minimum allocation to the BCF also includes, as in 2016-17, £130m of funds previously earmarked for NHS replacement care so that carers can have a break. Local plans should set out the level of resource that will be dedicated to carer-specific support, including carers' breaks, and identify how the chosen methods for supporting carers will help to meet key outcomes. In doing so, local areas may wish to make use of An Integrated Approach to Identifying and Assessing Carer Health & Wellbeing, an NHS England resource that promotes and supports joint working between Adult Social Care services, NHS commissioners and providers, and third sector organisations." 

Paragraph 6 of the Better Care Fund Operating Guidance includes a diagram which states that once the BCF budget is pooled under a section 75 agreement, the host body (LA/CCG) is responsible for:

  • Preparing audited accounts for the funds
  • Appointing an officer to manage the pool
  • Ensuring the fund is used in accordance with the approved BCF plan

Considering these aspects of the planning and operating guidance:

  1. Is the Local Authority the 'host body' under local section 75 agreements relating to the BCF?
  2. What was the total pooled Better Care Fund budget for 2016-17 and 2017-18, including the CCG minimum allocation, grants and additional funding from the CCG or Local Authority?
  3. How much from the total pooled Better Care Fund budget was spent on carers' breaks in 2016-17 and 2017-18?
  4. Did your Local Authority provide any funding for carers' breaks outside of the BCF in 2016-17 and 2017-18?
  5. Please send your local Better Care Fund plan for 2017-19
  6. How does the Local Authority inform carers about breaks available to them in the area?

Please note that CCGs have also been sent a freedom of information request about spending from the Better Care Fund on carers breaks so, if appropriate, you may wish to submit a joint response.

Our response


Please note that as a district council we do not have responsibility for social care. See Freedom of Information at Cumbria County Council to redirect your query using their website.


Response date
03 December 2018