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Patients to take control of 'personal' social care decisions

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Could this lead to positive changes for the system Could this lead to positive changes for the system?

Adults who use social care should be able to feel in control of their lives, according to new NICE guidance now open for consultation.

It was revealed that only 33% of adults using social care felt they had as much control as they wanted over their daily lives in 2016. NICE has now called for rules to be put in place helping staff avoid making assumptions about a person’s capacity to control their own care, including severely disabled patients.

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‘Social care is personal, it is about helping people live their life as they want,’ said NICE guidelines director Mark Baker.

‘Our committee looked at the views of people using social care services to find out what they really valued, such as having more control in how their care is planned. We have issued a set of draft recommendations to help providers deliver the care that people want and need.’

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NICE also advised that local authorities should include patients in decisions made outside of their direct care, such as sitting on interview panels to help recruit suitable staff.

Use of communication aids, such as picture books, were suggested to help people express their views, and commissioners should provide independent advocates to help people who may struggle to communicate their needs.

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In 2015-16, there were more than 800,000 people receiving long-term adult social care support in England. During this time services also responded to a further 1.8 million new requests for care and support. Councils in England spent £16.97 billion providing social care services in 2015-16.

The public consultation will run until 3 October 2017.

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