Change that leads to better lives

Paper 6a: Learning from local approaches to implementing Community Led Support in Somerset

The key driver for local authorities and their partners in adopting Community Led Support is delivering better outcomes for individuals and the community. However, in the context of austerity and reducing public service budgets, costs and efficiencies are also inevitable considerations.

This paper considers one of the key evaluation questions for Community Led Support:

Does CLS deliver better outcomes for the same or less resource?

To consider this question, we looked at data collected by two CLS sites that have been working in the ways described in Papers 1, 3 and 5 for some time, both before and since CLS was adopted to look at changes that have come about as a result of working in this way.

Somerset and Scottish Borders were selected to participate in this study because not only have they been working differently for some time, they have also developed a strong sense of data literacy based on a realistic approach to collecting and using different sources of evidence to look at what is changing in each locality within their Local Authority area and what can be learnt from this.

Kinds of data examined includes:

  • Outcomes for individuals (for example, relating to wellbeing, physical and mental health, social isolation/connections and the kinds of support experienced)
  • Costs to adult social care, and where possible other related services (e.g. the NHS)
  • Use of adult social care (for example, number of enquiries, number of social care assessments, number of people receiving adult social care support, waiting time for assessment, number of people in residential care)
  • Use of, and costs to, voluntary and community sector organisations
  • Wider changes (for example relating to hospital admissions and discharges).

The rest of this paper shares the findings and lessons from Somerset, including highlights from a review of data drawn from an analysis of 4 other CLS sites in England who have been running for a similar length of time from 2014-15. A second, linked case study (paper 6B) will share findings and lessons from Scottish Borders and is due for publication later in May 2020.

Download Paper 6A

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Jenny Pitts

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National Development Team for Inclusion
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