COOTE Anna, BUA Adrian
Reports on the work of the Southwark and Lambeth Early Action Commission which was set up to explore ways of taking local early action and preventative measures to improve people’s quality of life and reduce pressure on public services. The Commission carried out a review of local strategy, policy and practice; explored more than 30 examples of good practice in the two boroughs and further afield; and engaged with local residents and community-based groups and with other experts, through workshops and interviews. The Commission found the underlying causes of most social problems could be traced to the same social and economic challenges. Although some of these challenges, such as poverty and inequality were linked to national policy, making it hard to tackle them locally areas were identified where local early action could be effective in prevent problems. The Commission identified four goals for early action in Southwark and Lambeth: developing resourceful communities, where residents and groups act as agents of change; preventative places, where the quality of neighbourhoods has a positive impact on how people feel and enables them to help themselves and each other; strong partnerships between organisations; and where local institutions support early action. Case studies of good practice to support the report’s recommendations for prevention and early action are included.
NHS ENGLAND, LOCAL GOVERNMENT ASSOCIATION, ASSOCIATION OF DIRECTORS OF ADULT SOCIAL SERVICES
Sets out a national plan to enable people with learning disabilities who display behaviour that challenges to be supported to live more independently in their local community and reduce reliance on institutional care and long stay hospitals. The plan looks at the learning from the six 'fast track' areas; describes the new services that will be needed to better support people with learning disabilities to live in the community; and outlines how transforming care partnerships (commissioning collaborations of local authorities, CCGs and NHS England partners) in health and care will need to work together to deliver these changes. Areas discussed include: the need for appropriate local housing, such as schemes where people have their own home but ready access to on-site support staff; an expansion of the use of personal budgets, enabling people and their families to plan their own care, beyond those who already have a legal right to them; for people to have access to a local care and support navigator or key worker; and investment in advocacy and advice services run by local charities and voluntary organisations. To achieve the shift from inpatient to community-based services the plan identifies three key changes: that local councils and NHS bodies will join together to deliver better and more coordinated services; pooled budgets between the NHS and local councils to ensure the right care is provided in the right place; and adoption of a new service model.
WATSON Pat, SHUCKSMITH Janet
The Community Agents Project, a programme jointly funded through health and adult social care services, is an innovative approach to meeting the social needs of the elderly and vulnerable population. Community agents act as a one-stop shop, signposting people to the appropriate service that meets their needs. This could be an organisation or voluntary group that can help with shopping, arrange transport to the GP surgery or hospital appointments, help to complete forms, offer encouragement to maintain a care plan, organise a befriender, accompany to a local social activity or signposting to other agencies. The project has received a total of 486 referrals across the borough of Redcar & Cleveland for the period September 2014-September 2015, generating positive outcomes in the following areas: maintaining independence; faster discharge from hospital; reducing admissions to hospital; reducing isolation; improved financial status; appropriate use of health and social services; cost saving; and increases in community capacity. The report estimates a social return on investment of £3.29 for every £1 invested in the Community Agents Project.