Creating Better Adult Social Care Services

With an ageing population, the number of people living with complex, chronic or multiple conditions is increasing. Put simply, people are living with poorer health for longer.

According to the Care Quality Commission (CQC), the complexity of demand for health and adult social care services in England is continuing to rise.

In 2017, CQC inspections found that nearly 29,000 health and social care services were struggling to meet the more complex needs of today’s population. The changing nature of demand is also putting the system under ‘unprecedented pressure’, the report concluded.

Furthermore, as the report House of Commons Committee of Public Accounts states, the adult social care sector is underfunded, with the care workforce suffering from low pay, low esteem and high turnover of staff. According to the analysis conducted by AgeUK one in seven older people in England are left to get by on their own.

It is however, not all doom and gloom, as the annual State of Care report, published by the CQC, found that 78% of adult social care services were rated good and states that the quality of care in England is improving. The CQC has also mentioned that many providers have used the reports to improve their services, particularly in safety standards.

Developing the Workforce

It is undeniable that the care workforce is at the heart of good quality adult social care provisions, and as such, health and social care workers need outstanding support in professional and personal development. It is important, when looking for workforce development options, to take a tailored approach to the design and delivery that is mindful of the needs of older people, support workers, health and social care services.

Workforce development interventions need to balance the technical, professional and emotional aspects of care. Skills for Care have highlighted the importance of facilitating learning and development opportunities to staff in social care, ensuring a confident, capable, and skilled workforce.

Working in Partnerships

Working in partnership with other services – when done right – can greatly improve the patients experience and take some of the pressure off of carers. The first step to build a joint working environment, that meets the needs of vulnerable people and their families, is to identify the barriers to effective cooperation, so they can be broken down.

Information sharing between agencies isn’t always straightforward and can sometimes feel like a hindrance for certain agencies. Having efficient procedures in place for multi-agency information sharing and providing a clear pathway for referrals is important to enable better quality services.

Programmes such as ASSIST, implemented by Mansfield District Council, can make the difference in how organisations provide integrated services in a cost-effective way.

Strong Leadership

According to the Social Care Institute for Excellence, effective leadership is vital for developing a credible vision – being able to make sense of and communicate the bigger picture at a local level. This will have to be done while managing competing priorities, efficiency savings and relationships with partners.

Skills for Care have created a framework that describes the key leadership behaviours and attitudes that need to be demonstrated by social care managers at all levels. It aims to support the transformation of adult social care through better leadership.

Whichever leadership approach is used, leaders and managers will need to purposefully engage their workforce to move towards their organisation’s objectives and create better outcomes for patients.

What can you do to improve adult social care services in your area?

You may benefit from attending our highly interactive, one day training course, ‘A Practical and Informative Guide to Adult Social Care Inspections’, taking place on Wednesday 26th September in central London.

Exclusive Offer:

To compliment this interactive training workshop, there will be a policy and best practice forum being held on 25th September 2018 by Inside Government, ‘Adult Social Care Inspections 2018’. Delegates wishing to attend both will receive an exclusive 20% discount when booking through Inside Government.

Get involved in the conversation!

Are you involved in developing adult social care services in your area?

We’d love to hear from you. You can tweet us using #UMGTraining @UModernGov.

Can’t make the date?

We can also run this course for you In-house, at your organisation or a venue of your choice, on a date to suit you.

Contact our In-house training team on or call 0800 542 9414 to find out more.