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Welfare Reform on the Web (June 2002): Social Care - UK

AHEAD OF THE GAME

R. Winchester

Community Care, Mar. 14th-20th 2002, p. 32-33

Local authority social services departments have responded well to Best Value, partly because they are used to being inspected and have a good record of consultation with users. However, there are concerns about the cost of Best Value inspections and the burdensome bureaucracy they involve.

BEAUTY OR BEAST

R. Winchester

Community Care, Mar. 21st-27th 2002, p. 28-30

Report of an interview with the chair of the National Care Standards Commission (NCSC). The discussion covers the achievement of consistency in inspection, the role of the NCSC in the evolution of standards, the NCSC as a virtual organisation, and the assessment of the commercial viability of a service.

FERTILE WORK

L. Eden, D. Bowdler, and R. Thorpe

Community Care, Mar. 28th - Apr. 3rd 2002, p.38-39

Describes a project under which newly qualified Australian social workers are recruited to work in UK local authorities. Recruiting social workers from overseas is increasingly seen as a way of alleviating staff shortages in the UK.

INTENSIVE CARE

N. Grant

Family Law Journal, Mar. 2002, p. 18-20

Provides a guide to the structure, role and responsibilities of the National Care Standards Commission.

NEW CARE TRUSTS MAY INHERIT 'HIDDEN' NHS DEBT

N. Timmins

Financial Times, March 28th 2002, p. 4

The government needs to provide for at least £1bn in 'hidden' NHS debt if the new bodies due to commission NHS care from next week are to stand a chance, the NHS Alliance said. The Alliance represents doctors, nurses and others involved in the new PCTs (Primary Care Trusts) which from April will purchase hospital care and run community and family doctor services.

PERFORMING FOR WHOM?

A. Morley

Community Care, Mar. 14th-20th 2002, p. 36-37

The original aim of the Best Value regime was to increase the accountability of services to users. However there are now signs that the emphasis of Best Value may be shifting towards accountability to central government. This is creating tensions in the Best Value review process.

PLEASING EVERYONE ALL THE TIME

N. Walker

Community Care, Mar. 28th-Apr. 3rd 2002, p. 42-43

Under the minimum standards and regulations for residential and domiciliary care developed by the National Care Standards Commission, quality standards are set and can easily be priced by both providers and local authorities. Article proposes a six-stage procedural model for contracting for care services that would be open to scrutiny and would meet the requirements of Best Value.

SLIPPING THROUGH

A. U. Sale

Community Care, Mar. 14th-20th 2002, p. 30-31

Many local authority social services departments, especially in London and the South East, are heavily reliant on agency staff. Article discusses agency practices in vetting the staff they offer, in the light of recent revelations about lapses in the checking of supply teachers.

SOCIAL CARE STAFF LOSING OUT ON PAY

A.U. Sale

Community Care, Mar. 14th-20th 2002, p. 20

Pay for social workers and social care staff is falling steadily behind what is on offer to teachers, nurses and the police. Low pay is contributing to the current recruitment crisis in the field.

SPOKEN FOR

N. Valios

Community Care, Apr. 18th-24th 2002, p. 32-33

Advocates have a growing role in ensuring that the needs and wishes of users of health and social care are represented. Article describes moves to improve training for advocates and to develop service standards for the protection of both advocate and client.

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