HEREFORDSHIRE Council is helping simplify the often complicated process hundreds of Herefordians face when paying for care.

Yesterday it published a list of eight companies on its website approved to assist in managing intricate benefit payments for those people who handle their own care.

Around 500 people in the county receive a benefits payment directly, and then manage their care themselves.

This often puts them in the legal position of being an employer, and requires them to account for issues such as payroll, record keeping and accounts management that they may not have adequate training in.

Herefordshire Services for Independent Living have provided, and will continue to provide, guidance around payments.

However, councillor Graham Powell said this list gives people greater over where they access support from.

He said: “We want to provide people with as much choice as possible. So, we are pleased to announce we have a further seven organisations approved to provide support services.

“People can buy specialist direct payment support from appropriate individual’s or agencies.

“However purchasing from one of the council’s approved providers gives people assurance as all those listed have been through an approval process.”