Skip to navigation Skip to main content
Jeremy Cooper

‘Mission: Possible’ at ADASS Spring Seminar

 

It was fascinating and motivating to participate in the ADASS Spring Seminar – the most concentrated gathering of adult social care leaders there is. The discussions both in the sessions and around the fringes of the event give a clear view of the agenda of the sector.

As the programme already provided plenty of useful analysis – including from Aileen Murphie (NAO), David Behan (CQC), Jon Rouse (Greater Manchester H&C Partnership), Minister Caroline Dinenage MP, Shadow Minister Barbara Keeley MP, Ray James (NHSE), alongside leading Directors of Adult Social Care and others – we decided to try something different. Our theme drew inspiration from our report last year: ‘Mission: Possible – creating financially sustainable adult social care’.

Having taken this theme to heart (with the appropriate music and dark sunglasses), we were delighted that the workshop was well attended and our efforts well received. We explained that the ‘mission’ for those in the care sector is to promote greater independence and greater financial sustainability. This mission is challenging but achievable – at least for the best agents, with access to the best tools. We explored behavioural science as one of the key tools that can make this mission possible, and tested attendees’ knowledge of the subject through a training quiz which drew on inter national academic studies as well as IMPOWER’s own surveys and trial studies. (We have been asked to produce an online version that Directors of Adult Social Care can share with their colleagues – watch this space.)

I like to think that our energetic and informative approach ties in with what ADASS President Glen Garrod meant when he encouraged everyone at the conference to have “a bit of swagger” about being involved in social care. As Vice President Julie Ogley expanded, “social care needs to get out there and be proud.” I fully agree, and from my perspective, there are two main aspects to this.

First: changing the relationship with the NHS. Now that local authorities have proved themselves on DTOC by reducing delayed transfers of care faster than their NHS counterparts, there is an opportunity to transform Departments of Adult Social Care from minor partners to system leaders and place shapers.

Second, there was explicit recognition from the politicians and central government civil servants at the conference that social care is now sufficiently high profile that it may well have impacted the outcome of last year’s general election. This recognition played into discussions on the forthcoming Green Paper: there was a real sense that there are many votes to be gained or lost in how changes to social care policy are communicated. The public care about social care, but on the whole don’t understand it; so improving understanding must therefore be a priority.

It was also striking and very positive that while those in the sector are clearly very interested in the Green Paper, they are not waiting for it to provide policy answers. There is realism around how long policy changes will take in these Brexit-consumed times, and an acceptance that everyone just has to get on with making change happen.

As Glen said in his speech, now is the time for creative disruption – there is “an explosion of opportunity”. I’ll leave the last words to Julie who referenced our Mission: Possible theme in her closing remarks: “collectively we can make the impossible happen”.

Other relevant insight

Ealing’s ASC placement spend down 5% – how did they do it?

The second instalment of our EDGEWORK Series – launched today – is a guide to Primed Performance Management (PPM), and includes a case study detailing how the use of PPM in our work with Ealing Council helped them to reduce costs and improve outcomes.

April 11, 2019

Guest blogpost: ‘Trust is the basis from which people make the leap of faith from the old to the new’

This is a guest blogpost written by Rob Mitchell, Adult Principle Social Worker, Bradford Council. Like many local authorities, Bradford is going through a period of change. We are listening more carefully to people who invite social care into their lives, and focusing more on enabling them to live life how they choose to live it. I reflect on the challenges involved.

April 9, 2019

Why I was nervous about ‘Which councils are best at adult social care?’

Our top ten councils for adult social care analysis was the cover story of the MJ five weeks ago, and despite being somewhat nervous beforehand, I've been really pleased with the response.

April 2, 2019

IMPOWER INSIGHT newsletter

Sign up for the latest thinking on delivering sustainable change and better public services

No spam; unsubscribe easily at any time. Learn more in our Privacy Policy.

Close
Close