ADULTS needing social care support could be asked to pay more for the service as part of Hampshire County Council cuts, which could affect 12,000 people.

The council is considering holding a public consultation from June 15 to August 26 on plans to help save £43.1 million in adult social care by 2018.

The proposed changes include:

-Charging people for the cost of both of their carers, if they need two carers during a home care visit

-Taking into account 100 per cent of a person's disposable income rather than 95 per cent, when a financial assessment is carried out to establish how much they can afford to contribute towards the cost of their care

-Charging residents in council-run residential and nursing homes for periods of absence

-Taking into account income a person receives from letting out their own home when assessing how much they should pay towards their care costs in a residential or nursing home.

If implemented, the plans could result in estimated savings of around £1.5million.

Councillor Liz Fairhurst, executive member for adult social care, said: "The county council's funding from central Government has roughly halved in recent years, and with ongoing reductions, the council is having to make some very difficult decisions about the services we provide and the way we do business.

"This is requiring us to look at how to deliver services in new and different ways, and to charge for services in a way that is appropriate and fair to help offset some of the cost of providing support to a growing population of older people and adults with complex care needs.

"Adult Services will be asking for my approval on proposals to open a consultation this summer, to gauge the views of those who use our services and the public on a number of proposed changes to the way the county council charges for adult social care support. I will consider this request at my decision day on June 14."

Those who are assessed as being unable to afford to contribute anything towards their care will continue to receive care for free.

Currently, around 44 per cent of clients have their care and support at home paid for in full by the county council, 43 per cent make a partial contribution and 13 per cent pay for their care in full.