Thousands access adult care support in Doncaster

Councillor Pat Knight.
Councillor Pat Knight.

More than 8,340 people and carers accessed a range of adult social care support from Doncaster Council in the last year, a new report shows.

The figures are unveiled in a new comprehensive report published by the council – dubbed the ‘Local Account’ – which paints an in depth picture of adult social care in the borough.

It looks at feedback from users and carers, and improvements to the £110,779,000 (gross costs) a year service over the past year – as well as plans for the future.

The authority said people are benefiting from a range of services to help them live full and independent lives – including information, support in the home, support for carers, equipment and adaptations, and greater community opportunities.

Councillor Pat Knight, Doncaster Council’s cabinet member for health and adult social care and chair of Doncaster’s health and wellbeing board, said “I believe that we have made positive progress here in Doncaster over the last year towards developing and improving adult social care.

“An example of our progress is seen in the work we have done around dementia. We are one of the first places in the country to make a public commitment towards becoming a dementia-friendly community – including successfully being part of a bidding process for £1 million Government funding for new extra care housing schemes and a dementia ward at Doncaster Royal Infirmary.

“We want people with the condition to feel safe and supported and live as normal a life as possible. This is a great example of Doncaster leading the way.”

She added “Our goal always of course is to support people as much as we can to live independently in their own homes and live a fulfilling life.

“One way of doing that is by helping them to get out and be involved in their community through groups with activities such as gardening, bingo and talks. The council has now help set up around 2,000 such groups across the borough.

“We know community groups improve well-being and help create happy, thriving and sustainable communities and this is very important.”

In the last 12 months, the council has improved access to information by helping 63 new community groups to form and 327 new volunteers were recruited to tackle issues of social isolation, particularly among the elderly.

Wellbeing officers have worked with 450 people with lower level needs, connecting many of them to local groups and activities.

The ‘Minor Adaptations Without Delay’ (MAWD) team has sought to get more equipment out to more people to help them get around their home more safely. Feedback showed that after equipment is fitted, 87 per cent of people say their fear of falling has been reduced. MAWD has helped around 1,400 people during the year.

The authority’s safeguarding invstigations into allegations of abuse resulted in 19 people being taken to court, or had some other legal action taken against them. A further 67 people had other sanctions made against them.

Some people who caused harm, received training or counselling because they may not have known what they were doing was wrong. Altogether, 258 people came to realise that their actions were causing harm and upset to other people.

The council’s plans for adult social care services for the next year include:

* Making sure all service users are treated with dignity and respect

* Delaying and reducing the need for long-term care and increasing support through local prevention

* Giving more people choice and control over their care

* Making sure there are effective arrangements for safeguarding adults

* Expanding early intervention and prevention work in neighbourhoods

* Improving community participation and volunteering in a wide range of local activities, including well-being, culture, community self-help and shaping and delivering local services

* Providing accurate, timely information and advice to people who need it.

The full ‘Local Account’ document is available to view online through www.doncaster.gov.uk/localaccount or can be picked up from the Council’s Civic Office on Waterdale and other locations.