Housing recognised as key in review of adult social care

HOUSING has been recognised as having a key role in the future provision of adult social care, an independent review has concluded.

The review – published by the Scottish Government – recommends the establishment of a ‘National Care Service’, to “achieve the consistency that people deserve, to drive national improvements where they are required, [and] to ensure strategic integration with the National Health Service”.

It adds: “We need to start by challenging some of the prevailing narrative about social care support.

“It has its fair share of challenges, as this report will recognise and tackle, but it need not be unsustainable, or in crisis, or confined to the margins of society.

“Strong and effective social care support is foundational to the fourishing of everyone in Scotland.

“It is a good investment in our economy and in our citizens.

“In order to maximise the potential of social care support we have to change our perspective of what is social care support. We need to shift the paradigm of social care support to one underpinned by a human rights-based approach.”

The ‘The Independent Review of Adult Social Care in Scotland’ was led by Derek Feeley, a former Scottish Government director-general for Health and Social Care and chief executive of NHS Scotland.

He is quoted, here, in a Scottish Government announcement about the review, which has been presented to the Scottish Government health secretary.

In the foreword to the review, Feeley comments: “We need a new narrative for adult social care support, that replaces crisis with prevention and well-being, burden with investment, competition with collaboration and variation with fairness and equity. We need a culture shift that values human rights, lived experience, co-production, mutuality and thecommon good.”

Several references to housing includes an appeal that housing be part of the adult social care planning mix: “Strategic commissioning plans must be better linked to planning for other types of service, including particularly housing plans and plans for acute hospital care.”

Interestingly, in chapter eight of the review, about models of care, the following is observed: “The problem is not that we do not have good ideas; it is that we have not acted on them at scale and with genuine commitment.

“We seem to rely too much on bottom-up developments that we expect to flourish without systemic support.”

Read the review, here.