Council Reports Progress on Transforming Adult Social Care
Substantial progress on the modernisation and improvement of adult social care services in Reading will be reported to the Council’s Cabinet next week (13 Feb).
Highlights from the report include improvements in:
• Safeguarding of vulnerable adults.
• Information and advice to the public.
• Supporting people to regain or retain their independence through reablement and prevention.
• Joint working with Health to reduce delaying people’s discharge from hospital, reduce the length of hospital stay and reduce the likelihood of readmission to hospital.
• Developing a far greater range of housing options that enable people to live in their own home within the community, including 100 new units of Extra Care Housing available by the end of 2011/12.
• Extending the use of Personal Budgets that give people more choice about how their care or support needs are met.
• Working with carers to improve the advice, information and support available to them.
The details are included in a new report called The Local Account, which is an annual self-assessment of progress on improving adult social care services. The Local Account replaces the Annual Performance Assessment, conducted by the Care Quality Commission. This is the first time the Council has produced a Local Account for Reading, following a Government decision to make councils more responsible for delivering and monitoring improvement locally.
Commenting on the results set out in the report, Councillor Mike Orton, Lead Councillor for Adult Social Care said: “The transformation of adult social care in Reading began in 2008 and I am very pleased at the progress that has been made so far, particularly in light of the very difficult financial situation.
“This report confirms that adult social care services in Reading have undergone significant modernisation, in line with national best practice.
“Despite huge pressure on budgets, we have been able to make major improvements across a wide range of activities and services that make a real, positive difference to the lives of people who depend on adult social care services.
“This builds on the findings of the Care Quality Commission from their last report on Reading for 2009/10, when they found that the Council was ‘performing well’ across the board, and is a testament to the hard work of Council officers, care workers and partner organisations to find new, better and more efficient ways of working.
“But there are still challenges ahead, and the report identifies a number of key priorities for the coming years, which will help to drive further changes. Whilst a lot has been achieved there is still more to do and the Council will remain focused on continuing to improve and modernise these vital services.”
Priorities and challenges for 2012 and beyond, identified in the report, include:
• Continuing to give people more choice and control over their social care.
• Providing support as early as possible.
• Joining up community support services for adults, older people and families.
• Working with partners to cut domestic abuse and substance misuse.
• Continuing to ensure best practice in safeguarding vulnerable adults and children.
• Achieving value for money whilst continuing to meet need.
• Engaging service users and their families in the design and delivery of services.
The Council will also engage with service users to identify what they value and what needs to improve, in line with its Working Better With You initiative, and will use this information to help shape further change and improvements.
Notes to editor
1. From April to December, 2011, just over 3800 people received Adult Social Care Services provided directly or commissioned by Reading Borough Council. Of these, 2445 were people over 65 years old and over 750 were newly assessed for social care needs.
2. The Local Account replaces regular reports by the Care Quality Commission (CQC). Government policy requires councils to produce Local Accounts with effect from 2012-13. Reading Borough Council decided to take up the option of producing a voluntary report this year.
3. The last CQC Annual Performance Assessment of adult social care services in Reading covered the period 2009/10.