So what do they talk about on Health and Social Care Joint Integration Boards

So what do they talk about on Health and Social Care Joint Integration Boards

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All across Scotland, the 31 Integration Joint Boards have been meeting to begin their official work in running social care in Scotland.   This is a major shift in policy that has been given an easy ride so far.  The NHS is one of our national treasures and bring social care together with health can surely only be a good thing.   But as our article on Page 2 suggests, the NHS may not always guarantee good care. The minutes of all Joint Boards are available online for anyone to have a look at.  We analysed the agendas and papers for 62 meetings of 31 Integrated Joint Boards to see what they talked about. There is no mention of Learning Disability Services in these  meetings between March and June of 2016.  Often…
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Scottish Government to introduce new national guidelines on child restraint in Scottish schools

Scottish Government to introduce new national guidelines on child restraint in Scottish schools

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After years of campaigning the Kingspark families have won a commitment from the Scottish Government that the new guidance, 'Included, Engaged and Involved” will specifically refer to children and young people with complex additional support needs. It will make clear that children and young people with disabilities have additional legal protection provided by equality legislation There will be the inclusion of a section on the promotion of Positive Behaviour and the development of a whole school ethos. This would help in itself to minimise the use of restraint by helping to focus on the needs of each individual child. The guidance might be also be renamed so that it did not primarily focus on exclusion but more on positive behaviour. This will help steer teaching and support staff in the…
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Help protect children in special schools

Help protect children in special schools

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National Guidance exists for the use of restraint on “looked after” children in Scotland but nothing similar covers children with special needs in schools.  This is a major oversight and means schools have no national standards on the appropriateness of restraint techniques, the use of de-escalation and the necessary levels of training. This means that is some circumstances, bad practice has arisen and parents have little recourse to challenge teaching and other support staff.  For more information see our stories on the events at Kingspark School in Dundee. Even more surprising is that there is no external supervision of the care regime in schools.  HMIE does not cover this in their inspections.    It is left up the same local authorities who employ staff and run the schools to monitor…
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“A Return To The Dark Ages”?

“A Return To The Dark Ages”?

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Glasgow City Council Social Work Services are currently tendering for a new 20 bed Care Home for people with learning disabilities. In Scotland we like to think of ourselves as being more forward thinking than the rest of the UK.  But in November, shocked that more people were entering institutional care than leaving it in England, Norman Lamb MP, the UK Minster for Care admitted on the radio that the problem is that local authority provision for people living in independently was falling behind. And he promised action to deal with it.  The money was there, he insisted. ITS NOT THE SAME IN SCOTLAND Glasgow City Council is seeking "a discrete unit dedicated to the care and accommodation of 20 adults with learning disabilities, staffed on a 24 hour basis,…
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Are Mental Health Tribunals A Good Use Of Money?

Are Mental Health Tribunals A Good Use Of Money?

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In the ongoing process of examining the review of the Mental Health (Care and Treatment) Act 2003, the question of Compulsory Treatment Order has come up. Some people with learning disabilities have expressed concerns to us about the role psychiatrists play in making determination about the treatment of people with learning disabilities and that tribunals do not give them the right support.  . Mental Health Tribunals were set up in 2003 to provide a specialist check on the use of Compulsory Treatment Orders.  The service costs almost £9 million per year with Tribunal members being paid about £400 per day when sitting. Yet from our research it appears that less than 2% of applications for Compulsory Treatment Orders are refused.  Other research based on a Randomised Control Study from England…
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All you need to know on the Independence Referendum

All you need to know on the Independence Referendum

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Do It Yourself Workshop on the Independence Referendum Scotland is facing a big decision in the near future.  In September there will be a chance to vote on whether should or should not be an Independent country. Everybody should have a chance to play a part in this.  And we have been going around the country running workshops that people with learning disabilities can explore the different ways that they can come to a decision on the future of Scotland. We have run 25 workshops from Aberdeen to Duns and from Lochmaben to Cupar, covering much of the country and have spoken to over 350 people with learning disabilities.  We will be carrying out more over the next few months and if you are in one of our member organisations…
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For Bed Blocking or For Locking Up!

For Bed Blocking or For Locking Up!

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The Use of Section 13ZA. Section 13ZA was a recent addition to the Social Work (Scotland) Act 1968.  It was designed to end bed blocking in the NHS.  Many older patients with dementia no longer had the capacity to consent or disagree with a decision to move into a care home in the community.  As the guardianship process took so long to conclude, a large queue built up.  13ZA allowed social work and other interested professionals to act quickly in the person’s best interests.  This was in line with the principle of “least invasive” intervention. However there have been some recent concerns that Section 13za could be used to move people with learning disabilities from individual tenancies to cheaper care home placements.   Many of the people who use support…
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White Paper on spending on Disability

White Paper on spending on Disability

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How will an independent Scotland afford higher levels of spending on disability-related benefits? Scotland does spend proportionately more on disability-related benefits than the UK as a whole. But this needs to be set against other areas, such as housing benefit, where we spend less. Overall, welfare is more affordable in Scotland. Scotland is the eighth wealthiest nation in the developed world in terms of GDP per head, which means we have the money we need to support our most vulnerable people. As an independent country, we will be able to choose how to spend our money, based on the needs and values of the Scottish people, not on choices made at Westminster. The current Scottish Government’s approach will continue to be that Scotland should prioritise spending on protecting vulnerable citizens…
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White Paper on Disability Benefits

White Paper on Disability Benefits

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Will benefits change for disabled people? We intend that people living in Scotland and in receipt of Disability Living Allowance will not be migrated to Personal Independence Payment. We have also committed to abolishing the “bedroom tax”, saving 82,500 households in Scotland – including 63,500 households with disabilities and 15,500 households with children – an average of £50 per month. In addition, this Government proposes to launch an urgent review of the conditionality and sanctions regime, and review the system of assessments for disability benefits. Then, as the new independent benefits system is developed, we will work with disabled people and others with an interest in how to improve things further.
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White Paper onHealth and Social Care Integration

White Paper onHealth and Social Care Integration

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Our priorities for action This Scottish Government plans to continue with current arrangements for the management of the NHS in Scotland, focussing on sustainable quality and for the integration of adult health and social care services. Services will be accessed in the same way as under the devolution settlement. Despite efforts to address the challenge of health inequalities in Scotland over recent years, health inequalities persist and demonstrate that the “fundamental causes” of health inequalities – the socio-economic inequalities in society – are the most important. Recent research shows the strong correlation between poor health and poverty. It suggests that the reason for Britain’s high health inequalities is the failure of successive Westminster governments to choose to reduce inequality
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