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Welfare Reform on the Web (November 2000): Social Care - UK

ALCOHOL TREATMENT ANONYMOUS

L. Green

Community Care, no. 1336, 2000, p. 24-25

Failure by the government to produce its promised national alcohol strategy has led to services stagnating while the number of families suffering as a result of alcohol misuse continues to rise.

FOLLOW THE STANDARDS

M. Taylor

Community Care, no. 1335, 2000, p. 12

The New Labour government is focusing on driving up standards in social care through improved staff training. This should be supported by staff rather than being viewed as an assault on the profession.

JUST GOOD FRIENDS

D. Allen

Community Practitioner, vol. 73, 2000, p. 745-746

Case study of partnership working between health and social services in Brighton and Hove.

KEEPING THE BALANCE

G. Wiston

Community Care, no. 1337, 2000, p. 18

The major emphasis of the NHS plan is on investing in better health services and designing the system around the needs of patients. Its lack of concrete proposals for developing health communities neglects social services wider corporate responsibilities for social inclusion and citizenship. In developing joint working with health services, local government should insist that:

  • health improvement programmes are included under the umbrella of community strategies and local strategic partnership;
  • that there should be a commitment to equality of status for social work and social care values in the new intermediate care services.

LABOUR'S TOUGH LOVE

B. Jordan and N. Parton

Community Care, no. 1335, 2000, p. 24-25

Under New Labour, mainstream local authority social work has become the object of increased regulation, standard setting and enforcement. It has become divorced from the growing part of practice which takes place in the voluntary sector. At the same time the government has created a range of new or revamped agencies whose main emphasis is on enforcing ever stronger conditions and stricter requirements on service users. Staff practice a hybrid mix of counselling and enforcement which owe something to social work ideas. Social work could have a central role in implementing government policies, but needs first to find a less fractured and more self-confident identity.

THE LIBERTY BELL TOLLS

A. Thompson

Community Care, no. 1338, 2000, p.25

Looks at the implications of the Human Rights Act 1998 for social care, focusing on Article 2 (right to life), Article 3 (prohibition of torture) and Article 5 (right to liberty and security of the person).

OPPOSITION SETS OUT PROMISES FOR CHANGE

R. Winchester

Community Care, no. 1340, 2000, p. 10-11

Looks at Conservative and Liberal Democrat proposals for social care reform as set out in their draft manifestos. The Conservatives emphasise greater autonomy for local authorities and welfare-to-work strategies to force the unemployed into jobs. The Liberal Democrats also emphasize local autonomy combined with massive investment in public services, including the NHS.

A QUALITY STRATEGY FOR SOCIAL CARE

Department of Health

London: 2000

Consultation document lays out three possible models for a Social Care Institute for Excellence. It could be a not-for-profit voluntary body with core sponsorship from the Department of Health, a non-departmental public body funded by government, or part of the National Care Standards Commission or General Social Care Council. Proposes that guidelines from the Institute could inform Social Services Inspectorate inspections and joint reviews, and be available for local councils to take account of in their best value reviews. It would also inform the National Care Standards Commission's work of regulating and inspecting services.

(For comment see Community Care, no. 1338, 2000, p. 10-11).

SOCIAL CARE: THE VICIOUS CIRCLE

B. Hudson

Health Service Journal, vol. 110, Sept. 28th 2000, p. 20-21

Argues that partnership working between health and social care is being inhibited by discontinuities between different parts of the NHS and by the scale and pace of intra-organisational change in the health service, especially turbulence surrounding the emergence of Primary Care Trusts.

TRIALS AND TRIBULATIONS

A. Thompson

Community Care, no. 1340, 2000, p. 25

Article looks at the impact of articles 6 (right to a fair trial) and 8 (respect for family life) of the European Convention on Human Rights on social care. The Convention has been incorporated into the Human Rights Act 1998.

WE WILL SURVIVE

F. Richford

Community Care, no. 1337, 2000, p. 16-17

Reports comment on the proposals in the NHS plan to break down barriers between health and social services through pooled budget arrangements, the establishment of new care trusts to run joint services for the elderly, and joint Best Value inspection of health and social care.

WHAT USERS WANT

Community Care, no. 1338, 2000, p. 20-23

Representatives of people with mental health problems, people with learning difficulties, visually impaired people, and older people give their views on how social and health care could be improved to meet their needs.

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