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Individual budgets and adult safeguarding: parallel or converging tracks? Further findings from the evaluation of the Individual Budget pilots

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JournalJournal of Social Work
DatePublished - Oct 2011
Issue number4
Volume11
Number of pages17
Pages (from-to)422-438
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

The transformation of adult social care in England is underway, with the aim of promoting greater control and choice among people eligible for publicly funded social care services. A key part of personalization is the policy move to promote personal budgets. This article aims to investigate the inter-relation of personal budgets with another policy goal, adult safeguarding. A pilot programme of the predecessors of personal budgets, individual budgets, took place 2005-2008 and was evaluated by an independent research team. This article presents findings from the team's second round of interviews with adult safeguarding coordinators (ASCs) in the 13 pilot sites held early 2008 which are discussed in the context of proposed adult safeguarding reforms in England.

This second round of interviews with ASCs revealed greater engagement with social care transformation than previously. However, their detailed expertise in adult safeguarding and their local intelligence and experiences were not regularly accessed. This may constitute a missed opportunity to address some of the tensions of personalization in practice.

The interviews reveal that the personalization of social care is often interpreted as relating to greater use of Direct Payments and has yet to consider other facets of this policy transformation that are central to social work practice, including safeguarding.

    Research areas

  • social care services issues, social work issues, ill/disabled adults

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