Medway Council is one of the highest performing councils in the country for adult social care, according to research released today.
IMPOWER, an independent consultancy focussed on improving public services, has released a list of 15 councils, including Medway, which achieve greater than average outcomes from a less than average spend per head. This means that residents who use social care services in those areas are receiving better outcomes and the councils are making best use of public funds.
Medway Council is committed to providing a high-quality service for its residents and on Thursday, 20 February, at the annual budget meeting, Medway set out its commitment to support older residents with full council agreeing to increase the Adults Social Care budget by more than £2million to a total of £68million. This will help the council support the increased number of older people who need its support.
The budget includes funding of £55.5million to support people with care and support needs, of which around £17.2m will support older people and around £38.3m will fund care and support for working age adults.
An example of Medway Council’s ongoing support to its vulnerable adults is through its investment in the Shared Lives service. Similar to foster carers, shared lives carers are paid to share their home, family and community life with an adult who is not able to live on their own, giving them independence and a support network. Shared Lives offers support to those who need it and gives them a chance to move in or spend time with an approved Shared Lives carer. Together they share a home, family and community life.
Medway has also significantly reduced, and sustained, some of the lowest rates of delayed transfers of care (DToC) in the south east of England, due to a strong partnership approach and investment in a range of impactful and innovative services. The success in Medway, has been the result of a number of different initiatives, and strong partnership working between Medway Council, Medway Maritime Hospital, Medway Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and Medway Community Healthcare to reduce the delays including the Home First service.
Medway has also introduced a new approach to adult social care called three conversations which focusses on helping residents maintain their independence by listening to what is important to them and connecting them with appropriate support in their communities.
The council has also invested in extra care housing, a type of sheltered housing which has a permanent care team within the building to meet the needs of the residents who live there. It can help people aged 55 and above live independently in their own homes within a community setting. Extra care housing offers self-contained apartments, communal spaces, support services and care staff who are on site at all times. This type of housing can help people who may need to leave their homes due to life changes or health problems and want privacy and independence but need some help with day to day living. There are five extra care housing facilities across Medway including Bellerophon House in Rochester, Montgomery Court in Hoo, Prospect Place in Gillingham, Atlas Place on St Mary’s Island and Rogallo Place in Rochester.
Helping people maintain their independence
Cllr David Brake, Medway Council’s Portfolio Holder for Adults’ Services, said: “We are extremely pleased to be named one of the highest performing councils in the country for adult social care. We are committed to providing high quality services to help support our residents. We are investing in areas which help people maintain their independence and live longer in their own homes with support from their local community. I am extremely proud of the adult social care team who work tirelessly to support our residents and we will continue to work closely with partner agencies to ensure our residents are receiving the best support possible.”