About this guide

What is Dignity in care?

Dignity in care means the kind of care, in any setting, which supports and promotes, and does not undermine, a person’s self-respect.

The new and updated ‘Dignity in care’ guide has been designed for people who want to make a difference by improving standards of dignity in care. It provides a wealth of resources and practical guidance to help service providers and practitioners in developing their practice, with the aim of ensuring that all people who receive health and social care services are treated with dignity and respect. The guide can also provide people who use services with information on what they can expect from health and social care services. It applies to England only.

Whether you only have five minutes to get some quick ideas, or five hours to gain an in-depth understanding, this guide should meet your needs.

Research indicates that there are eight main factors that promote dignity in care. Each of these Dignity Factors contributes to a person's sense of self-respect, and they should all be present in care. This is why we have structured the guide in this way.

About the development of this guide

Scoping and searching

Scoping and searching was carried out in June 2006, with updated searching in November 2009 and January 2010, forming the basis of a (non-systematic) literature review. Department of Health policy and relevant legislation were both significant inputs for the guidance. We looked at the evidence available and used a DH survey (2006) to formulate the framework for the guide. The main sections were based on the definition of dignity, ie. What it means to people. We used the then (2006) Care Services Improvement Partnership national networks and latterly (2010) the SCIE Good Practice Framework to collect practice examples, and distilled the guide from all these sources.

Stakeholder involvement

We sought input and advice throughout from the then Dignity in Care Board, run by Professor Ian Philip, and sector stakeholders.

NICE accreditation

NICE accreditedNICE has accredited the process used by SCIE to produce guidelines. Accreditation is valid for 5 years from July 2011 and is applicable to guidance produced using the processes described in the SCIE Guide Production Toolkit.

For full details on our accreditation visit: NICE Accreditation.