SCIE press release

Reablement - two new films on Social Care TV

10 December 2012

If you don't use it, you'll lose it! At first, the person may think they're helpless. It's a gradual process, but soon they realise they're doing things for themselves.

Angela Price. Community reablement worker, Central Bedfordshire, on Social Care TV

Two new films have been launched on Social Care TV, which show how short, intensive support at home or in dedicated units, can help people learn (or re-learn) skills for everyday tasks. Reablement supports people to regain independence and manage alone at home with little or no support. Reablement can lead to earlier hospital discharge and reduced need for long-term support. As a result, investment in reablement can yield significant cost savings for health and social services.

These services can have other benefits for individuals and their carers. Family members can see the value that reablement brings and they may need to spend less time providing care; the person who receives reablement support can also start having a social life again, which is important to avoid isolation and loneliness.

SCIE's Chief Executive, Andrea Sutcliffe, says:

Our new Social Care TV films show the impact that reablement services can have for individuals whose lives have been affected by illness, accident or disability. Intensive support over a short period of time can really help people regain their confidence and sustain their independence. A lovely feature of these films is the obvious enthusiasm of the teams providing the service - they can see the difference they make which makes for great job satisfaction! The films also show that managers and commissioners can be confident that reablement services also help to ensure public money is spent to best effect.

Carers UK'sDirector of Policy and Public Affairs, Emily Holzhausen, says:

If you tell families and carers they are going to get reablement, they may ask: 'What's that?' If you then tell them that their relative is going to get some concentrated support which will help them get back on their feet, by giving them a little bit more confidence and independence, they are often encouraged. This is especially true if it comes after a time in hospital. For families, it's a very worrying time. If you don't live with them, you worry an awful lot about how they're going to manage. Reablement is a really positive service for families in particular.

Film one - reablement: the role of families and carers

The film introduces Jill Hunter, who was recently discharged from hospital with limited mobility, following major surgery. Jill lives alone and was determined to return to her independent lifestyle. To enable this, Central Bedfordshire adult social care services commissioned their reablement team to work with Jill. We hear from two community reablement workers about the incredible transition that people like Jill can make from initially requiring intensive support, to becoming completely independent. We also hear how crucially important it is for families to "buy into" the reablement ethos and contribute to its success. In turn Emily Holzhausen, from Carers UK, describes how reablement teams must respect and involve families, recognising their role as part of the whole support circle.

Film two - the business case for reablement

Reablement is often a short term measure, but there are long term savings on offer. This film looks at how, by enabling independence and promoting dignity, reablement can "re-skill people" significantly enough to reduce the size of care packages or remove the need for care and support altogether. That money can be spent on other care services. The best evidence shows that sixty per cent of people that leave a good reablement service need no more home care, compared with 5% who have no reablement. The other 40% who leave reablement services see their need for care at home to be reduced and this has been seen across a wide range of English councils. Local health commissioners can also see the benefits to their services and budgets and reflecting this, many have invested in the local reablement service - approximately 30 per cent of reablement schemes are funded jointly by local health and social care.


Media contact

Steve Palmer | Press and Public Affairs Manager | Tel: 020 7766 7419 | Mob: 07739 458 192 | Email: