The Board received a report from the Strategic Director – People, which advised them that Halton was awarded £92,827 from the Department of Health (DoH), as one of six sites taking part in Phase 2 of the Named Social Worker Pilot (NSWP), which had been delivered within the Transition Team, between September 2017 and April 2018.
Members were advised that the Named Social Worker Pilot had been initiated by the DoH in response to the 2015 consultation ‘No voice unheard, no right ignored’, which sought views on strengthening the rights of people with learning disabilities, autism and mental health conditions to enable them to live more independently. It was noted that the DoH funded the Innovation Unit (a social enterprise) and the Social Care Institute for Excellence (SCIE) to support local areas, co-ordinate the pilot and evaluate the scheme.
Officers advised that the project had built up an understanding on how having a named social worker could contribute to individuals with learning disabilities achieving better outcomes; specifically that they and their family were in control of decisions about their own future; and were supported to live with dignity and independence. The Pilot had been about trying something different, piloting new ideas and generating early and indicative evidence as to their impact.
Phases one and two of the Pilot were discussed in detail and the adoption of the Halton model. It also explained the impact of the programme had had on young people and provided case studies in appendices 1 and 2 of the report. A presentation was made to the Board which told the storey of ‘Peter’, one of the clients of the Pilot, showing the positive effect it had made on his life. Members were advised that a review document had been developed which was attached at appendix 3.
Following Members’ questions the following points were noted:
· The programme currently catered for 17 people who were distributed between 5 staff. It was noted that the social workers were not dedicated to this programme alone; it was just a part of their jobs;
· As the benefits of the NSWP were proven, one of the next steps would be to gain support for it so that it could continue. The NSWP report would be shared with the Health and Wellbeing and One Halton Boards;
· Adult Social Care was part of a housing forum that met once a month so that priority cases could be discussed;
· A named social worker would stay with and guide the young person through the process until they reached adulthood.
The Chair thanked the Officer for presenting the item and requested that an update be provided to the Board in the future.
RESOLVED: That the Board notes the report and comments made on a future Named Social Worker Pilot approach with complex cases.