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Agencies join to boost self-directed support

27 February 2012

Increased choice for people receiving social care is the aim of a new partnership to promote self-directed support among care providers.

Self-directed support involves direct payments to individuals, enabling them to buy or arrange their own support packages to meet their assessed personal, social and healthcare needs. The Scottish Government is committed to introducing legislation to encourage people to meet their social care needs in this way.

A 10-year self-directed support strategy, drawn up with the support of COSLA and stakeholders, aims to make self-directed support the mainstream route for funding of support services.

The programme will see almost 30 Scottish independent sector organisations working together with social care providers to help implement self-directed support across the country.

One part of the programme is taking forward the "Changing Support Changing Lives" initiative. The Long Term Conditions Alliances Scotland (LTCAS), Scottish Consortium for Learning Disability (SCLD), ENABLE Scotland, In Control Scotland and the Institute for Research and Innovation in Social Services (IRISS) will work together to roll out a programme of events to help social care providers ensure their services are geared up towards self-directed support.

Public Health Minister Michael Matheson said: “Self-directed support is all about placing greater control and responsibility in the hands of people who receive social care, enhancing their independence and wellbeing. For example, an individual could receive a direct payment to get support to live in their own home – such as help getting washed and dressed – or arranging support to attend college or take part in fitness activities.

“The purpose of the bill will be to lay the foundations for self-directed support to become a mainstream choice for people receiving social care, introduce the language and terminology of self-directed support into statute, and make it clear that it is the citizen’s choice as to how much control they want to have.

“As part of the programme, the Coalition of Care and Support Providers and Scottish Care will work with providers to promote increased understanding of self-directed support, giving them the knowledge to help people with social care needs tailor packages to meet their personal needs.”

Click here for a Journal article on self-directed support.



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