Choice is Key

May 11, 2017

Consensus is pleased to share a new industry think piece from ADASS (Association of Directors of Adult Social Services) which we have sponsored. The report has been launched at the ADASS Spring Seminar, being hosted in Staffordshire with over 200 senior delegates in attendance.

‘Choice is Key’ is a provocative report on what’s next for accommodation and support for people with learning disabilities, autism or both with contributions from a range of providers including Consensus, strategic commissioners, ADASS Leads and Transforming Care Leads.

The report brings together a range of views, not all of them that ADASS or we, Consensus agree with.  However as we all strive to improve the lives of those we support it is important to maintain an open debate.  Exchanging ideas and challenging perceptions is vital if we are to develop personalised services that enable people with learning disabilities, autism or both to live more independent lives.

All providers are working towards a future where people with learning disabilities, autism or challenging behaviours have more choice and control over their lives.  This includes securing more independent living options.  Organisations such as Consensus who provide accommodation and support to people with learning disabilities are also determined to make the difference. There should be no doubting the commitment from providers to play their part in bringing about the necessary change. They have after all been engaged in innovating and investing in new community based services for years, often at risk to themselves.

Central to delivering change is ensuring there are more options that give people control over where they live, who with and how they are supported. Many providers are investing in bespoke environments and labels such as supported living and residential care, can be misleading.  It’s about the quality and the values of the management, the approach and the capability of that environment to consider what the individual requires and to provide that outcome flexibly and sustainably.

Putting the outcomes for individuals first will be paramount to overcoming the challenges. We need to ensure we work together with individuals and their families to find the best outcomes whilst not being bound by ideology.

We would like to thank the participants in this report for their contributions and hope that this sparks further debate and opens dialogue between providers and commissioners which is important.

Let’s not get hung up on models let’s focus on outcomes.