Directors of social services in West Midlands are taking a
different approach to finding out how well their social services
are doing - by asking peers from other councils, service users and
carers to give their opinions.
Part of an 18-month programme organised by the West Midlands
branch of the ADASS, all 14 directors in the region will be
undertaking a self-assessment and inviting a team of experts to
carry out a four-day challenge. This team will include peers from
social care teams in other councils and two experts by experience
(carers or service users).
They will be asked to critique and observe services in this
four-day challenge to inform the councils involved about how well
their services are really doing.
The involvement of service users and carers - or as they have
termed them 'experts by experience' - is a welcome move showing
that the directors of services in West Midlands are serious about
ensuring that their teams remain focused on producing positive
outcomes for carers and people receiving care.
Service user and carers across the region have already embraced
this development and are looking forward to the opportunity to
input into the process in the knowledge that their experiences will
help inform future service provision.
Martin Reeves, chief executive of Coventry city council and the
lead for sector-led improvement in adult social care in the region,
said: "The involvement of experts by experience adds to the quality
of the peer challenge process and reminds us of what we are all
trying to deliver - service improvements working with rather than
simply for our users and carers."
To read more about the inclusion of 'experts by experience' in
the West Midlands council service four-day challenge visit: