Maximising the potential of reablement


  • Reablement is meant to help people accommodate illness or disability by learning or re-learning the skills necessary for daily living.
  • Although a focus on regaining physical ability is central, addressing psychological support to build confidence as well as social needs and related activities is also vitally important and often neglected.
  • Funding for reablement continues to be channelled via the NHS to encourage integrated working between local authorities and health. Local authority commissioners should be working with their clinical commissioning group (CCG) counterparts to negotiate use of the monies.
  • Everybody involved in planning, referring to and providing reablement will need to operate differently than is the case in the traditional context of home care.
  • Reablement requires a move away from commissioning on the basis of time and tasks. Instead, reablement should be commissioned on the basis of the outcomes that the service will support the individual to achieve.
  • Reablement workers must learn to stand back and encourage people to regain or re-learn the ability to do things for themselves.
  • There is consensus that reablement is not effective unless care workers undergo specific training to understand the principles of delivering a reablement service.
  • Achieving the full potential of reablement relies not only on the internal organisation of the service but also on how access to other professionals and supporting services is organised.
  • Although research evidence says little on the subject, there is growing practice interest in supporting people living with dementia through reablement.
  • If a person has ongoing support needs at the end of reablement, it is crucial that subsequent services continue to provide support in a way that maintains any progress that person had made.


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  • Maximising the potential of reablement