How is wellbeing understood under the Care Act?
A full definition of the different aspects of wellbeing that are relevant can be found in the statutory guidance – ‘Chapter 1. Promoting wellbeing’.
‘Wellbeing’ is a broad concept. It is described as relating to the following areas in particular:
- personal dignity (including treatment of the individual with respect)
- physical and mental health and emotional wellbeing
- protection from abuse and neglect
- control by the individual over their day-to-day life (including over care and support provided and the way they are provided)
- participation in work, education, training or recreation
- social and economic wellbeing
- domestic, family and personal domains
- suitability of the individual’s living accommodation
- the individual’s contribution to society.
There is no hierarchy in the areas of wellbeing listed above – all are equally important. There is also no single definition of wellbeing, as how this is interpreted will depend on the individual, their circumstances and their priorities.
Wellbeing is a broad concept applying to several areas of life, not only to one or two. Therefore, using a holistic approach to ensure a clear understanding of the individual’s views is vital to identifying and defining wellbeing in each case.