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Using a ‘wellbeing’ cost-effectiveness approach to improve resource allocation in social care

Forder, Julien and Fernández, José-Luis ORCID: 0000-0002-4190-7341 (2015) Using a ‘wellbeing’ cost-effectiveness approach to improve resource allocation in social care. Discussion paper (2893). Quality and Outcomes of Person-centred Care Policy Research Unit (QORU), Canterbury, UK.

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The promotion of wellbeing is the newly-stated guiding principle for the long-term care (social care) system in England. It signals a shift away from a focus on care need ‘deficits’ approach. Such a change in perspective has the potential to substantially alter how public care systems operate. The practical challenges are significant, both in the interpretation of wellbeing goals and in determining how the care system might be configured to achieve them. The main aim of this paper is to contrast a needs-led resource allocation system with one using a maximising wellbeing approach; that is, one based on: measuring the wellbeing consequences of using services and applying the principles of cost-effectiveness and opportunity cost. As a precursor, the paper also describes how a maximising wellbeing approach might be applied in the case of longterm care. We argue that in theory a maximising wellbeing approach with full information will produce greater total wellbeing improvement for the same budget than a needs-based system. In practice, the comparison will depend on: (a) whether we can actually measure wellbeing in a way that is consistent with the policy goals; (b) the availability of cost-effectiveness information; and (c) the decision rules used to implement a maximising wellbeing approach.

Item Type: Monograph (Discussion Paper)
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2015 The Authors
Divisions: Social Policy
Personal Social Services Research Unit
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
Date Deposited: 13 Mar 2015 15:28
Last Modified: 15 Sep 2023 23:35
Funders: Policy Research Programme at the Department of Health

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