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It is very reassuring to see that the government and the Care Quality Commission are zoning into the issues surrounding the commissioning of 15 minute visits to service users of the care sector. Although, the health and social care sector has suffered huge blows in finance in the past few years, that does not excuse what has now seemed to become a form of comprise amongst the quality of care being provisioned.
As a domiciliary care agency, we constantly come across service users who have expressed their experiences in the past with some domiciliary care providers – and usually these issues derive from the lack of quality, as well as the limited time surrounding the services provisioned. This is not to say that this lies in the fault of domiciliary care providers or the social services. This places a lot of domiciliary care agencies in a difficult position, when they are obviously headstrong and adamant on providing the best quality of services possible in a realistic time frame, but are sometimes met by opposition from social services, due to the simple fact that the budget required for such a service is no longer available.
What needs to be avoided are the numerous cases we hear about, when a carer is expected to complete a task on behalf of a service user in the space of 15 minutes, when in reality they should be given at least 30 minutes to do so.
The government need to review the careful allocation of government expenditure for future years. We are fortunate to have a solid infrastructure which comes in the form of the NHS, as well as some of the most hardworking individuals in the health and social care sector. None of the services provided to some of the most vulnerable people in our communities should ever be compromised. It is up to us as individuals to ensure that these people can receive the best quality of care possible; and is the responsibility of the government and agencies such as the Care Quality Commission to ensure that such support is readily available and implemented.
Written by Nana Appiah