William Eichler 22 August 2017

People should be at the centre of social care, health body says

Councils should help people to be more involved with their own day-to-day care, health body says as it releases new guidance for public consultation.

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has published draft advice for local authorities aimed at improving people’s experiences of using social care.

In 2016, only a third of adults using social care services (33%) felt they had as much control as they wanted over their daily life.

The new guidelines recommend each person is actively involved in all key decisions about their care. They also insist staff should not make assumptions about people’s capacity to be in control of their own care.

They also described how to help people express their views about their care and support.

‘Social care is personal, it is about helping people live their life as they want,’ said Professor Mark Baker, director of the NICE centre for guidelines.

‘Our committee looked at the views of people using social care services to find out what they really valued, such as having more control in how their care is planned.

‘We have issued a set of draft recommendations to help providers deliver the care that people want and need.’

Alice Maynard who chaired the group that developed the NICE guideline said: ‘Those of us who use social care services need them to be able to live an ordinary life.

‘If services are not delivered well, our lives become difficult at best and worthless at worst. This guideline sets out what good social care should be.’

‘The committee looked at people’s experience across all settings: those living in their own homes and those who are not,’ Ms Maynard continued.

‘We have issued a set of recommendations we believe will allow people to live ordinary, dignified, worthwhile lives.

‘We now want to hear the views of commissioners, providers and people who use services to help us give everyone working in and receiving social care the best chance of success.’

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