Overview of the SARs Library project
The sector has long demanded a library of Safeguarding Adults Review (SAR) reports. The Department of Health has commissioned SCIE and RiPfA to develop this resource. The aim is to maximise the value of individual SARs through two different kinds of resource. One will support the quality of individual SARs and the other will enable more widespread and effective use of the learning from SARs. This will support a virtuous circle whereby as the quality of individual SARs goes up, it also supports their being used to better effect.
What are we doing?
Join the SARs Library to access:
- Draft SAR Quality Markers
- Start of a repository of published SAR reports (n=96) and reference list
- Coversheet for coding and submitting SARs
- Signposting to research and other reports about SARs
Staged process for creating the Library
Starting to populate the Library
The resources we have developed are future-oriented. They will enable SARs to be routinely added to the Library allowing details to be easily collated. This includes:
- SAR data:
- administrative data about the SAR
- details about the SAR process as well
- details of the people on whom SARs have been conducted and their cases
- The learning from SARs
- systemic learning to inform organisational improvements
At this stage, the collated data will be pulled together into two master spreadsheets for the SAR data and the learning respectively. We plan to update the master spreadsheets quarterly. For the SAR data, we will share a simple dashboard that shows key details of the reviews submitted to that point.
For the learning from SARs, we plan to give all network members access to the master spreadsheet allowing you to do your own searching, filtering and analysis. Uniquely, the master spreadsheet for the learning will allow people to find specific learning points from within other people’s SAR reports.
Doing anything further, however, requires your support in starting to populate the Library – see What you can do section. Feedback from business managers suggested completing the cover sheet progressively over the timespan of a SAR would create minimal extra work.
Our project has focused on setting up processes for the future, so SARs sent to us have been stored in an accessible repository with a reference list but they are not yet coded further. The more retrospective coding you can find capacity to conduct, using the cover sheet, the more we will collectively be able to benefit from past learning.
Achieving proof of concept and seeking further funding
Using excel spreadsheet formats has significant limitations and challenges. Our goal is to use this format to demonstrate ‘proof of concept’ of how direct access to ‘real time’ collated data about reviews, as well as overarching summaries, can enable wider insight about SAR activity, and allow better sharing and impact of the learning gained.
Further stages of development are needed to identify more sophisticated digital and web-based solutions to aid data collection, storage and presentation, which makes an accessible and ‘real time’ overview of SAR activity and learning possible.
Who is involved?
The library is being developed jointly by Research in Practice for Adults (RiPfA) and Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE), working closely with colleagues from the sector.
RiPfA and SCIE are pleased to be working with the Social Care Workforce Research Unit (SCWRU) at King's College London on this project. The work of the SCWRU on SARs and SCRs is funded by the Department of Health's Policy Research Programme.
The SARs Library project is designed to bring together, build on and add value to relevant SAR activity that colleagues are already undertaking. Resource development is involving SAB chairs, SAB managers and agency safeguarding leads.
Frequently asked questions
Will this repository be solely for completed SARs? Open
The focus is initially on completed SAR reports. We are keen to hear feedback on what else, if anything would be useful, and in what ways.
Will there be any link to Domestic Homicide Reviews (DHRs)? Open
The library will initially contain only SAR reports. We will be exploring whether and how learning points for safeguarding from DHRs can be included. We are not anticipating at this stage that full DHR reports would be included in the SARs Library.
How can I get involved?
What Safeguarding Adult Boards can do Open
The resources we have developed are future-oriented. Using them will allow current and future SARs to be routinely added to the library in such a way that details can be readily collated. The support of SABs is therefore needed in starting to populate the library.
To support the SAR library, we ask SABs to:
- Publically sign up to the SAR Quality Markers and use the Quality Markers in your SAR processes
- Commit to submitting your SARs to the library, by
- using the cover sheet to log information as the SAR progresses
- including in SAR commissioning specifications, the production of learning that fits with the SAR Library coding scheme for learning
View which SARs we are already aware of.
Watch the webinar Open
In September 2017 SCIE and RiPfA held two open access workshops and a webinar for professionals in relevant safeguarding roles to contribute to the design of the library. This included discussing:
- How would a library of SARs be useful?
- What content is needed and how it should be accessed?
- What level of commonality in SAR reports is desirable and/or feasible?
- How should SARs be submitted to the library?
- Are there other priority issues to address?
You can watch the webinar and review and download the presentation to gain further information about the development of the library.
Spread the word Open
The development of a library that is useful and usable will only work with the support of the sector, and the collaboration of colleagues from the safeguarding sector. Please get in touch if you have any questions, and encourage colleagues to support the Library by completing the cover sheet and submitting their SARs.
Governance and reporting
This project is reporting progress to:
- Lyn Romeo (Chief Social Worker, Department of Health)
- National Safeguarding Network
- National Network for Safeguarding Adults Board Chairs
For more information please contact: