Fife’s health and social care budget is facing £8.8 million worth of proposed savings.
The region’s integrated joint board will be asked to approve a range of cuts to make inroads into an estimated £15.4 million budget gap for the coming year.
Meals on wheels could go from £3.62 per delivery to a flat-rate charge of £4.50 for two course meals, and £5.75 for three courses.
Community alarm service charges could also rise from £2.25 per week to £2.80.
Councillors on Fife’s policy and co-ordination committee will have to pass the two increases on Thursday morning before they can be adopted by the IJB.
Elsewhere, it is proposed to save £250,000 by cutting care packages for individuals with complex needs.
Service users who are supported by staff when they go on holiday will no longer have the carer’s costs paid and will be expected to find an estimated £1,000 themselves.
Managers say the move could save £500,000, based on 50 service users taking one week’s break per year, but have recognised it may result in people not taking holidays at all.
A plan will also be put in place to try to claw back more than £1 million in GP prescribing costs.
Day care provision could be cut at Leng in Newport and St David’s in St Andrews, while plans to “re-provision” two care homes by purchasing places in the independent sector may also be pursued.
Staff travel expenditure and travel outside Fife will be closely scrutinised in an effort to save £1.2 million as staff are asked to use the cheapest mode of transport and make more use of technology.
The proposals will be considered by members of the IJB on Thursday afternoon, when a report by Jen McPhail, chief finance officer, will confirm that legacy costs – overspends and savings unachieved in prior years – currently total £15.3 million and continue to have a lasting impact.
“This is a critical issue for the future,” she notes in her report.
“It is paramount transformational cost savings options and plans to ensure financial balance are delivered in the 2019-22 Strategic Plan.”
However, opposition leader Fife Conservative councillor Dave Dempsey described the proposals tabled as a “car crash budget” which reflects “desperate underfunding” by the Scottish Government.
“Fife IJB has been structurally underfunded by £11m since the start and yet again it is trying to plaster over cracks which are only getting deeper,” he said.
“The cuts proposed will undoubtedly damage the quality of care Fifers receive.
“All this still leaves the IJB £6.5 million in the red.
“It’s an impossible ask and Fife residents shouldn’t be faced with cuts to the most vulnerable when council taxes are rising.
“The IJB should refuse to set a budget and appeal directly to Scottish Health Secretary Jeane Freeman for a sensible level of funding.”