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LDAS has now published its report on Self Directed Support two years on. Read the full report here. This article was in our November newsletter.

Self Directed Support was the Scottish Government’s plan to transform social care in Scotland.    It had two main aims.

First it gave people more choice over who from and how they got their support from.  

Second it was to make the lives of people with social care needs better by improving the “outcome” of the support they got.

Two years on from the implementation of the Self Directed Support Scotland Act we surveyed people with learning disabilities all over Scotland to find out what had happened. 

Half of the people who responded to us had got a Self Directed Support Package and half hadn’t.   That allowed us to compare what difference SDS made.  


This first chart shows the questions we asked about the control people had over their support and the planning of their care.  

There were clear advantages in all four areas for those who had self directed support.  However the absolute results in the “right level of support” and “able to change service” indicated that there had been less progress here for people with learning disabilities than in other areas.  

Both changes to care planning to involve people and providing more information in Easy Read and other systems have taken great strides in recent years and it would seem that these areas have been the ones that it has been easiest to address.  

We have been in a period of unprecedented change in the delivery of social care in Scotland and it should not be surprising that there are many concerns about the level of support.  


We asked a second set of questions about what outcomes people enjoyed from their support.  

These were based on the “Talking Point” areas and on a similar POET survey that had taken place in England.

The most striking thing about these results is the closeness in the replies whether or not people get SDS.  Those without SDS had better outcomes in being kept healthy.  There was a dead heat in regard to doing good things during the day.   The other four outcomes saw better results for those with SDS packages.  

Overall all types of support were most effective at “Helping People Keep Safe” and “Do things in their local area”.

This would suggest that Self Directed Support is not yet greatly more effective at helping people achieve good outcomes from their support than other methods of organising support.  

This is where the headline for our report comes from.  People with Self Directed Support have more control over their support package and plans.  But this has not led to significantly better outcomes from their support.  They are Still Waiting for this to happen.  

The report also contains much more information from each council in Scotland on Resource Allocation, Option 2 take up, Eligibility Criteria and much more.  You can download a copy of the report from our website for free.