Home Care Day: From home care to anywhere

From home care to anywhere - Karen Hedge shares her day looking at SDS in a home care context

I spent this afternoon at Scotland’s National Action Plan for Human Rights meeting on Health and Social Care, where representatives from Audit Scotland who produced the report into Self-directed Support came along to present their findings.

It was a really really good meeting; we all left with a to-do list of connections to make, ways to contribute to the recommendations made in the report, and examples of innovative practice to share. But, I can’t help feeling it was a meeting of the converted.

Whilst the report discusses various barriers and their solutions, it seems that one of the biggest barriers to SDS is buy-in.  Where it works, is where there is a committed person or persons driving and promoting it - Audit Scotland describe pockets of good practice across the country.

Almost all access to home care can be categorised into one of the four SDS Options, but often people are not even aware that they are accessing Self-directed Support. And if they were, I question whether they would be satisfied with the category into which they had been placed.  This completely undermines the Human Rights based ethos of the Act.

Whilst Scottish Care will continue to promote good practice via the work of our Partners for Integration and Improvement project, this is not enough.  There needs to be a national strategy to engage and hold accountable the Integrated Boards who should be promoting a fundamental right.  We know that access to outcomes-based care is key to the preventative agenda, and what better way to make sure you get that right, but to actively engage the experts - the supported people, in the way that their care will be delivered.

As part of #Homecare17 I responded to a Tweet from a carer questioning the relevance of the term 'home care', when actually it should mean ‘from home care to anywhere’.  To think outside the box, get out of your home (if you want to) engage with your community or further, go to work, this is the home care of the future, and SDS can take us there. We know it is because in some places it’s already happening.

Shout it from the rooftops: “Self-directed Support - our choice is our right”.

Karen Hedge

National Director, Scottish Care



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