What does significant impact mean?
A given situation could have a ‘significant impact’ on one individual but not on another. Therefore, professional judgement and analysis of the information gathered in the assessment are crucial to establishing whether there is indeed ‘significant impact’ on the individual’s wellbeing.
The following are examples of what ‘significant impact’ could mean:
- Significant impact could be a consequence of a single effect: this means that the inability to achieve two or more outcomes affects at least one of the areas of wellbeing in a significant way.
- Significant impact could be a consequence of a cumulative effect: this means that the individual may have needs across several of the eligibility outcomes, perhaps at a relatively low level, but as these needs affect the individual in various areas of their life, the overall impact on the individual is significant.
For example, an adult is struggling to manage and maintain their nutrition, personal hygiene and toilet needs as their standards are reducing due to low social interaction and decreasing mobility around the home. The adult is consequently very close to becoming unable to meet most of the outcomes.
It could be argued that the adult does not meet condition 3 of the eligibility criteria for adults with care and support needs due to the level of needs being relatively low. However, taking a holistic view of the level of impact of the individual’s mobility needs, and the accumulation of a number of the ‘low/medium’ levels of needs, this adds up to a ‘significant impact’ in the adult’s wellbeing.
- Significant impact could be a consequence of a domino effect: this means that currently the individual may have needs in relation to few eligibility outcomes, but it can be anticipated that in the near future other outcomes will be affected, causing a significant impact on the individual’s wellbeing.
For example, an individual has identified needs around their inability to maintain relationships with their family and in making use of facilities or services in the local community, but currently does not have any problems with managing and maintaining their nutrition, personal hygiene, toilet needs or a habitable home environment. However, the individual is depressed, affecting their ability to interact socially. As a result, their emotional situation is decreasing further to the extent that it is clear that in the near future they also will not be able to manage or maintain nutrition, personal hygiene, toilet needs or a habitable home. Therefore, the impact on the individual’s wellbeing is significant.