The transformation of adult social care

The health and social care sector is changing, with increasing moves towards personalised provision - responding to individual needs and choices. Most people prefer to live independently in their own homes, and direct payments are a good way to sustain this. The Health White Paper 'Our Health, Our Care, Our Say' sets out the government's aim to increase the take-up of direct payments and to pilot the introduction of personal budgets.

An personal budget is designed to provide service users with greater choice and control over their support arrangements. Two linked initiatives are tackling personalisation in social care.

The government is undertaking a two-year personal budgets pilot programme in 13 councils. 'In Control' is an initiative to help councils and their partners introduce self-directed support systems for the delivery of social care. The aim is to roll them out nationally should they prove successful.
The increasing personalisation of services will affect:

  • assessment
  • commissioning services
  • developing the local market resource allocation systems
  • the development of brokerage and advocacy services.

A recent study by the Personal Social Services Research Unit at the London School of Economics found 'substantial variation' between direct payment arrangements across councils.

'Putting people first' - this document is the concordat with the Local Government Association (LGA), the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (ADASS), the NHS and others. It is a shared vision and commitment to the transformation of adult social care over a period of three years.

Report on direct payments across councils - on the London School of Economics and Political Science website.

Individual budgets guidance and policy - on the DH website.

Individual Budgets Pilot Programme website - on the Care Services Improvement Partnership (CSIP) website.

Social care Transformation: Elected Members Briefing - this briefing outlines the vision and aims of Putting People First, as well as its implications for lead members and council budgets. It is also useful reading for any councillor interested in the transformation agenda.

Transforming adult social care: access to information, advice and advocacy
A new review, co-produced by the IDeA, outlines the latest good practice on effecting change in adult social care services.

10 questions to ask if you are scrutinising the transformation of adult social care
The above is a scrutiny toolkit for adult services.

Scrutinising the Transformation of Adult Social Care: Practice Guide
This guide discusses key elements in the transformation programme.

Building Community Capacity to Put People First website

This website is a place where people who are interested in the role of social capital in the transformation of social care can find out more and contribute to a learning network. The network seeks to gather and share effective approaches and ideas around building community capacity and social capital as part of a project being by the Department of Health. It works closely with a number of local authorities and partners to develop best practice in this field as well as capture all the excellent work going on in other areas.

Building Community Capacity


Emma Jenkins, Principal Consultant
Adult Social Care Services
telephone: 020 7296 6287

Mona Sehgal
National Adviser for Adult Social Care

14 June 2012

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