Gary Bourlet shares his thoughts on social care and what he thinks are most important having read the CQC State of Care report

What next for social care?

The CQC are seeing what is good about services and what is bad about services. The CQC look at all the things like health and social care. Most of the people they asked say their services are good.

Some services are not checked by CQC. I worry about what happens in those services to check people have good support and are listened to.

The CQC is also looking at how health and social care could be better. These are the things I think are important based on what people talk to Learning Disability England about

Support staff you know and can trust

People said they needed more continuity. The CQC found that in lots of places it was really difficult to find staff who stay long term in their jobs. This makes it much harder to have good services because we know that people find it difficult to adjust to a change of staff. Things get better when people know each other well. It is also better for staff when they have a good job they can stay in long term.

Staff who are well paid and have good support themselves

The pay for social care staff is very bad and the cost of living is going up really quickly. People have families they have to support. To get good staff who will stay long term they need to have career opportunities and be better paid.

Checking services led by people with learning disabilities and their families

Services need to be better at monitoring their staff. Services should have to employ people with learning disabilities and family members to help with that monitoring and training.

Once you’ve got a service going, they always have to make themselves look good. When the CQC comes around they make sure it all looks its best then they can go back to the old ways if they are not a good service. We need to see more people with learning disabilities and more family members working for the CQC themselves.

Powers to make services change and long term help to keep staying good

The most important thing is for services to change to be better in the longer term. The CQC is very good at inspecting and telling people what they have seen. They don’t have the power to actually make much better. Health and hygiene inspectors have the power to shut down places like takeaways if they aren’t clean enough and make sure they stay closed until they are clean enough. I think the CQC should be able to do something like that and work with the services to help them get better.  CQC can tell services to change but we need help for services to change led by what people with learning disabilities know makes good support.

There’s going to be a 10 year plan for the health service. There needs to be a 10 year plan for social care.

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