Prepaid Financial Services (PFS), has been appointed by Torbay and South Devon NHS Foundation Trust (TSDFT) to manage a prepaid card programme to distribute funds for social care and health budgets. As part of the programme, PFS will work alongside the Foundation's direct payments partner, Disability Focus to distribute funds to over 400 service users.
PFS was initially shortlisted via the Surrey County Council prepaid cards framework and then selected via a subsequent tender process.
The solution will enable all service users to benefit from a more streamlined approach to receiving funds and paying for care, empowering individuals to have better control over their own health and social care budget, to choose their own providers and also to top up the funds if they wish.
Having a pre-payment card will enable people who are in receipt of a health or social care budget to have their funds directly loaded onto a card rather than having to set up a bank account and pay via cheque. This will be welcome news to those who receive direct payments, as they will be able to choose from a wider range of service providers and access funds sooner.
In addition, they will no longer need to submit bank statements and will not have to send so much paperwork to the Trust as proof of purchase, reducing lengthy admin time for clients and the Trust.
About batch payments
PFS developed new functionality for the Trust which included control capabilities to match the goals and requirements that TSDFT had for appropriately assisting their service users, each with varying disability levels. One such example is the ability to undertake batch control: this entails allowing the Trust to efficiently control bulk payments via user information and automatically make all of payments they need rather than having to do each one individually.
Other specific programme details:
Steve Honeywill Assistant Director Operational Change, TSDFT, said:
"Allowing individuals to lead an independent life has always been at the heart of our ambitions for service delivery and this prepaid card programme is a really positive step forward in achieving that."
Jon Corps, Senior Finance Manager, TSDFT said:
"Having a centralised, digital system will enable us to monitor the commissioning marketplace and ensure that we can meet the social and healthcare needs of communities now and into the future."
Noel Moran, CEO, Prepaid Financial Services said:
"There are immense benefits in offering a prepaid card programme to a particularly vulnerable group such as those suffering from long term ill health. Relieving these groups of the administrative burden of manually managing the paperwork associated with their direct payment, is not to be underestimated.
"As well as taking the pressure of service users, a well-implemented prepaid card programme allows the provider's finance team to focus on the more positive aspects of maintaining their health budgets without needing to chase users for and reconcile receipts and other paperwork."