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Applying outcomes in community-based social care practice in England

Rand, Stacey, Collins, Grace, Zhang, Wenjing, Milne, Alisoun and Silarova, Barbora (2023) Applying outcomes in community-based social care practice in England. Journal of Long Term Care, 2023. 33 - 44. ISSN 2516-9122

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Identification Number: 10.31389/jltc.169


Context: Social care outcomes (the effect of services on the quality of life of people with support needs and unpaid carers) have been proposed as a way of improving the quality and effectiveness of care. Outcomes have also been proposed as a way of reconceptualising ‘needs’ that have applications in needs assessment, care planning, evaluation and care practice. Objectives: The study aimed to provide insights into social care professionals’ experiences and views on the collection and application of outcomes data in practice and what they believe are the benefits, challenges and barriers to implementation. Methods: Interviews were conducted with 25 social care professionals in England and analysed using a framework approach. Findings: Participants reported perceived benefits of using outcomes data, especially to focus effort on improving the well-being of people with support needs and carers. Perceived challenges include requirements for data collection set by funders/commissioners, the volume of data collected, difficulties in separating non-service-related influences on outcomes and the format of collection. Participants felt a more flexible approach might facilitate more meaningful conversations, rather than a ‘tick-box’ exercise. Limitations: The study sample was purposive, based on established connections. It only included professionals from London and South East and Central England. Implications: Although outcomes are perceived as important in helping to improve people’s lives, social care professionals identified a number of challenges. Further research to understand and address these challenges is needed.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2023 The Author(s)
Divisions: LSE
Subjects: R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine
H Social Sciences
Date Deposited: 16 Jun 2023 10:24
Last Modified: 16 Feb 2024 23:45

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