Will Direct Payments Make Adult Residential Care more Personalized? Views and Experiences of Social Care Staff in the Direct Payments in Residential Care Trailblazers


Williams, L; Ettelt, S; Perkins, M; Wittenberg, R; Lombard, D; Damant, J; Mays, N; (2016) Will Direct Payments Make Adult Residential Care more Personalized? Views and Experiences of Social Care Staff in the Direct Payments in Residential Care Trailblazers. Social Policy & Administration. n/a-n/a. ISSN 1467-9515 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/spol.12276

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Abstract

Direct payments, i.e. cash payments made directly to the individual in lieu of social care services, have become an established option in council-funded domiciliary care as a means to better personalize care and support. As part of its agenda to modernize social care, the Government tested their use in long-term residential care in 18 trailblazing councils in England. This article presents findings from the independent evaluation of this initiative, using interviews with project leads seconded to the programme in all participating councils, and with council and care home staff involved in implementing direct payments in residential care in five sites. Interviews were conducted between September 2014 and November 2015. They explored professionals' views and experiences of personalization in residential care and their thoughts on the potential contribution of direct payments to promoting personalization. Whilst there was agreement that good care takes personal preferences into account and that many care homes could provide a more personalized service, doubts were voiced about whether direct payments were an appropriate mechanism to achieve this aim. This was seen as particularly pertinent in relation to residents with very high care needs and limited capacity to exercise choice and control. Interviewees also identified a number of risks and challenges to implementation, including financial risks to care homes. The findings from these interviews suggest that the contribution of direct payments to personalizing residential care may be more modest than expected.

Item Type: Article
Keywords: Direct payments, Residential care, Care homes, Personalization, Choice and control
Faculty and Department: Faculty of Public Health and Policy > Dept of Health Services Research and Policy
URI: http://researchonline.lshtm.ac.uk/id/eprint/3649248

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