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Self-directed support: A National Strategy for Scotland



The national strategy for self-directed support in Scotland has been developed to help take forward the personalisation of health and social care services in Scotland.

The increasing numbers of people accessing social care and the range of individual needs mean that services and supports will have to continue to become much more flexible and responsive in the future. This strategy responds to increasing interest in reshaping care and support in Scotland. It aims to set out and drive a cultural shift around the delivery of care and support that views people as equal citizens with rights and responsibilities. It recognises that for consumers and providers alike, tighter financial pressures, and demographic changes mean that improved outcomes cannot be delivered with more of the same.

Self-directed support has a role in supporting the Government's overarching aim of growing the Scottish economy. It supports the empowerment of individuals to gain equality of opportunity and sustain their citizenship. It also contributes significantly to improving health and well-being and tackling health inequalities.

The strategy has been developed with the support of a National Reference Group and through extensive discussion with other stakeholders. It will be a long term strategy, spanning 10 years, and so what is provided is a framework for significant changes in the way support is provided. It is not intended as detailed guidance, which may follow as the strategy is implemented.

The key themes of the strategy are:

  • Values and principles that are based on human rights and equality legislation.
  • Ownership and leadership reflecting the importance of leadership at all levels, including citizen leadership, and adoption of co-production in planning and delivering services, support and workforce training.
  • Supporting choice and control through a shift to outcomes focused assessment, review and commissioning. It recommends action to assess the role and funding of support organisations, including disability led organisations.
  • Resources: it recommends a review of the tools for assessing individual budgets to see what works best. It promotes joint work between local and national government to consider the use of non-social work budgets in providing lower level support and creating inclusive communities.
  • Measuring progress through engagement with regulatory bodies to ensure the principles of self-directed support are understood. A short term goal is to review information gathered nationally to reflect the focus on individual outcomes rather than outputs and processes.

Following consultation, an implementation plan will be developed to identify timescales and targets for the strategy's short, medium and long term goals.

The draft strategy will be available for download in easy read approximately two weeks after the start of the consultation process. If you require the document in any other format, this can be requested from Chris Raftery.