Care has become a discussion topic more so then ever before, now for us working in care we have always tried our hardest to bring it to the forefront of discussion but with less success. The current situation as made people understand a little more about care and that it stands alone. We have thousands of care providers out there and they are so dispersed that it is hard to get people to understand what Social Care do. We have outreach service, care homes, nursing homes, mental health support services, learning disability supported living, personal support assistance, day services many of these service privately funded, some having local authority contracts and Continuing care contracts (which does make a difference).
We all have to follow the same standards within the Care Standards we have to follow the law. At times not only do you have to follow care standards you have to meet the standards within what ever local authority you are in (can sometimes conflict) also, you may have the Continuing care contracts to follow (clinical). It can be a lot and most of our services do, but just like the NHS there are failings and sadly these failings are easier to report as that is what people like focus on. Successes don’t sell news or media platforms or TV programs.
What I know now is that we must move forward now and we must ensure social care is represented more and that we do not allow us to be forgotten.
There is a need for clear vision of what care is and how it fits into other vital services out there. We initially clapped and priorities the NHS yet somewhere along the line Social care was lost or forgotten. Eventually people realised that social care is not the NHS it’s very different but the services provided are just as vital and essential (it took a while). We were fooled in thinking at one point that the government brought in a badge for care but it was already there. What we need is more then lip service we need to step up and shout that we will not be the poor relative, we will not allow our clients, service users, residents, customers to be short changed. Stop the poor funded home care, stop these care companies cashing in. When companies are not performing lets act quicker let us set the standard. When the companies that thrive and nurture both their clients and staff we need to know about it. We need to share what we learn. We need to value the social care industry and realise that they are a vital service in protecting and safeguarding our most vulnerable. It’s time we showed people that care is a career not a stop gap. Lets not allow care to be brushed to the side. We need to keep talking, we need to keep saying we will not except less the best. If you are a provider out there start valuing the service and yes I know you a business but we need you to understand you are in the business of CARE. It doesn’t need me to define it.
Care home companies, sort the travel time, fight for it, stop booking people in and allowing your teams to short change the customer. Not just in time but in care. 15 minutes is never enough, 45 minutes is barely enough. Contracts need to be better and need to have value in them not just task. The local authority and CQC talk about ‘task orientated care’ being organisational abuse (which it is) but the contracts at times seem to focus on task rather then the person. Care companies come together share your success, tell us how you got outstanding, in fact prove it to me that you deserve it.
Everyone out there you deserve a standard of care and you need to be empowered to ensure you get it. Ask for the information, speak up if you are not happy, stop being afraid that someone won’t believe you, the more we shout the more someone will have to listen.