Healthcare Blog

New coalition sets out standards of social care for Government, UK

May 07, 2017

A new adult social care coalition called on the government to focus on prevention instead of acute need today, as it launched 12 principles1 drafted to shape the Adult Social Care Green Paper.

The government's Green Paper is weeks away and a new national strategy on ageing is due later this month -that could mean vast reforms to care systems for the UK's ageing population. Now 14 leaders of the adult social care sector, called the Interagency Group on Adult Social Care2, have joined forces to tell the government in 12 points of principle what the Green paper can not afford to omit.

The coalition, representing users, carers, communities and staff want the government to provide more resources to ensure that adult social care supports people to live independently and provides appropriate and strategic support for care that takes care outside the hospital so that people can act as full citizens with choice over their everyday lives.

1 See full briefing below for the 12 principles

2 The members of the coalition include:

ADSS
drewadss.demon

Age Concern
Sophie.Howellsace

BGOP
Julie.gaigerbgop

Carers UK
Pat.orrthirdsectorpr

CSV
jtannercsv

Help the Aged
sophie.davisonhelptheaged

IDeA
paul.baileyidea

LGA
Michaela.keatinglga

Long term conditions alliance
catrionamoorelmca

Mencap
Michele.harrismencap

Sainsbury Centre for Mental Health
Andy.bellscmh

NHS Confederation
matthew.akidnhsconfed

Rethink
Lana.savicrethink
liz.nightingalerethink

Scope
Catherine.Allenscop

3 The Coalition aims to influence government's policy in Adult Social Care, in particular to argue for a shift in funding to preventative services.

The 12 principles issued by the Interagency Group on Adult Social Care

Users and carers

1 All people should be enabled to be full citizens with choice, control over everyday life and the support needed to take part in the life of the community even if they need help to become or remain independent.

2 Adult social care must address without discrimination the needs of a huge diversity of people with different circumstances, contributions, and choices. We recognise that social care supports people during transitionary periods in their lives, and that, over time, some people may require less support rather than more.

3 We recognise that we are all co-producers of individual and community well-being, and social care should encompass the development of social capital, in which individuals are able to contribute as well as receive, irrespective of need for services and support.

4 People requiring health and social care services or support should be able to access timely, good quality and appropriate information, assisted by independent advocates where needed, to help them secure personalised care and support over which they have control and which meets their needs.

5 Carers should be treated as equal and expert partners in the delivery of care. They should be valued for their contribution and their own needs recognised, with proper account given to promoting the opportunities for them to have a life outside of caring.

6 The current move towards greater individualisation of services and budgets (e.g. cash entitlements, case management, GP Commissioning) should continue. This must however be integrated with concepts of block purchasing and strategic commissioning that ensure stability of markets, quality assurance and protection of users, as well as wider community benefits.

Local leadership and accountability

7 Local leadership and accountability is essential to achieve a balance between strategic approaches for all citizens, and services for people with higher levels of need. Local authorities have a key role in bringing partners together to deliver with, and for, the local community.

8 There needs to be flexibility and accessibility in local delivery mechanisms to deliver personalised care which enables greater choice and control. Solutions should be developed locally through partnership with stakeholders and engagement with local people.

9 Partnership working should be underpinned by a new performance management framework that sets out shared outcomes for all citizens regardless of client group and secures co-operation between the key stakeholders.

10 Social care needs to address both key determinants of health and wellbeing and what people say is important to them. This should be based on what people say they want e.g. the Audit Commission and BGOP's research found there are seven areas that people say are central to independence and well-being:

housing and the home
neighbourhood
social activities, social networks and keeping busy
getting out and about
income
information
health and healthy living.

Resources and legal framework

11 There needs to be a long term shift in resources from acute to community-based services and a greater emphasis on well-being. To achieve this, we need to better understand the true costs of current health and social care services. Additional resources will be required in the short term to affect this long term shift and establish future funding requirements.

12 The legal basis of social care should be reviewed to deliver a framework focused on rights and entitlements, upon which eligibility is based.

NHS Confederation - UK