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Welfare Reform on the Web (March 2003): Social Care - UK

ANOTHER FINE MESS

B. Hudson and G. Herbert

Health Service Journal, vol. 113, Jan. 30th 2003, p.24-25

Reports results of a simulation exercise on the effects of fining local authorities for causing delay in discharging patients from acute hospitals by not providing appropriate placements or care packages. The simulation revealed significant potential for conflict between NHS organisations and local authorities, and no benefit to service users. Participants thought that the charging system would deplete resources available for community service development. They favoured joint NHS/local authority approaches to the development of an effective system for preventing delayed discharges.

COUNCILS WARN OF MAJOR CUTS AHEAD OF NEW CASH DISTRIBUTION SYSTEM

D. Hayes

Community Care, Jan. 23rd-29th 2003, p.18-19

Government is introducing a new protocol for allocating grants to local authorities from April 2003 called Formula Spending Share (FSS). This is expected to lead to shortfalls in social services budgets for councils in London and the Southeast as the formula favours historically high-spending councils in the North.

FUNDING DELAYED DISCHARGES

Anon

Registered Homes and Services, vol. 7, 2002, p.114-116

The Health Secretary has announced extra funding of £100m a year over three years for social services to help them reduce numbers of delayed discharges of older people from hospital. Article reports responses to this extra money from the Association of Directors of Social Services, Help the Aged, and the Independent Healthcare Association.

GSCC REGISTRATION AND TRAINING

Anon.

Registered Homes and Services, vol. 7, 2002, p.123

The General Social Care Council has announced the initial findings of a consultation on registration fees for social care workers joining the Social Care Register from 2003 and has set an annual registration fee of £30.00 a year for qualified social workers.

HOME TRUTHS

G. Betts

Health Service Journal, vol. 113, Jan. 9th 2003, p.26-27

Charging social services for delays in patients being discharged from hospital is unlikely to result in improved care for older people. Instead, a new kind of support worker dedicated to the care of older people in the community is needed. These workers could prevent avoidable admissions to residential care.

LISTENING EXERCISE: SUMMARY OF FINDINGS

Social Care Institute for Excellence

London: 2002 (SCIE reports; 1)

Report summarises the views of people working in the field on SCIE's role in the development of social care. Respondents thought SCIE's role should include promotion of joined up working, development of standards, dissemination of research, lobbying for social care, and involving users and carers.

NO SECRETS: GUIDANCE ON DEVELOPING AND IMPLEMENTING MULTI-AGENCY POLICIES AND PROCEDURES TO PROTECT VULNERABLE ADULTS FROM ABUSE

Home Office [and] Department of Health

London: Dept of Health, 2001

This guidance has been produced in response to concerns about reporting of crime against vulnerable adults in care settings. It aims to help local social services departments develop multi-agency codes of practice in collaboration with the police and the NHS. It begins by defining abuse and goes on to discuss developing an inter-agency framework and policies.

THE PRACTITIONER'S GUIDE TO WORKING WITH FAMILIES

M. Bell and K. Wilson (eds)

Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan, 2003

This book looks at the social, political and welfare context of working with families; theoretical and practice approaches to working with families, and working with family groups in difficulty.

PRIMARY CARE PARTNERSHIPS - PROGRESS AND PROBLEMS

A. Coleman and C. Glendinning

MCC: Building Knowledge for Integrated Care, vol. 10, no.6, December 2002, p.3-8

Since coming to power in 1997, the Government has introduced a raft of policy measures designed to encourage closer collaboration between NHS and local authority services. These partnerships are developing at different levels, both with social services and a wider range of local authority functions. This paper draws on the latest round of the three-year national Tracker Survey of Primary Care Groups and Trusts. Finds that some of the traditional obstacles to partnerships - particularly difficulties with organisational boundaries - and the imperatives of national policy priorities are continuing to shape local collaborative activity.

PUBLIC LAW PROTECTION OF VULNERABLE ADULTS: THE DEBATE CONTINUES, SO DOES THE ABUSE

J. Williams

Journal of Social Work, vol. 2, 2002, p.293-316

Argues in favour of a new public law that would give social workers new powers to intervene to protect adults who are being abused. Considers the impact of the Human Rights Act 1998 on the debate, developments in the USA and proposals for reform in Scotland.

REAL EVIDENCE-BASED PRACTICE DEVELOPMENT: A PARTNERSHIP APPROACH

M. Barratt

MCC: Building Knowledge for Integrated Care, vol. 10, no.6, December 2002, p.9-14

This article examines what has been learnt about practice-academic partnership from two projects aimed at supporting the development of evidence-based practice in social care. Tangible support from organisations is needed to encourage both the partnership approach and the development of evidence-based practice.

REGULATION OF CARE (SCOTLAND) ACT 2001: SUBORDINATE LEGISLATION TO CATER FOR THE COMMENCEMENT OF REGULATION OF HOUSING SUPPORT SERVICES, CHILD CARE AGENCIES AND LIMITED REGISTRATION SERVICES FOR ADULTS WITH INCAPACITY: CONSULTATION PAPER

Scottish Executive

2003

Paper describes the background and proposals for new legislation which is needed to ensure that housing support services, child care agencies and limited registration services for adults with incapacity can be regulated by the Scottish Commission for the Regulation of Care from April 1st 2003.

SOCIAL WORK EDUCATION AND TRAINING: ANNUAL QUALITY-ASSURANCE REPORT 2001-02

General Social Care Council

2003

Report sets out the results of monitoring by the General Social Care Council (GSCC) of providers offering the Diploma in Social Work or post-qualifying awards. Providers are praised for delivering good academic training and work experience, despite difficulties in finding work placements due to staff shortages in some places.

STAINS ON THE RECORD

R. Winchester

Community Care, Jan. 9th-15th 2003, p.26-28

Article reviews the impact of New Labour's policies on social care. It covers local authority performance measurement, criminal record checks on people working with children and vulnerable adults, the role of the National Care Standards Commission, adoption reform, youth justice and delayed discharge from hospital.

STANDARDS OF CARE AND REGULATION OF CARE SERVICES IN SCOTLAND

C. Pearson and S. Riddell

Research findings - Health and Community Care Research Programme, no. 24/2002

Report was undertaken to explore some of the key features of the inspection of care services in Scotland prior to the establishment of the Care Commission in April 2002. Found that:

  • there had been considerable variation and inconsistency in inspection across Scotland;
  • inspection reports tended to represent the views of service providers rather than service users;
  • reports had not routinely been made available in alternative formats and community languages (except for school inspection reports).

TALES OF NEGLECT AMID DEPRIVATION

A. Gillan

The Guardian, January 28th 2003, p.12

Four years after the death of Victoria Climbie the article explores to the life of a social worker in Haringey. The situation is getting better but there are still problems. Last May the Council received a zero star rating in a league table of social services performance.

TIME TO READ THE RIGHTS ACT

N. Valios

Community Care, Jan 23rd-29th 2003, p.30-31

There have been few legal challenges under the Human Rights Act 1998 by vulnerable people around social care issues such as disability or childcare. Argues that this may be due to:

  • unavailability of legal aid;
  • lack of understanding of the Act among staff in public services;
  • lack of support for potential claimants daunted by the complexities of the legal system.
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