The Commission for Social Care Inspection is helping service users inspect social care services, delegates were told at Community Care Live today.
Mental health charity Mind service user Tina Coldham said that her role as an Expert by Experience was “giving service users more power”.
Wheelchair user Angela Smith, from the NCIL, said care staff had sometimes assumed she was using the service rather than being an inspector with Experts by Experience.
Coldham said that the CSCI pilot demonstrated the importance of client input.
Kate Eldon of Bristol and South Gloucestershire People First, who has learning difficulties, said having used services for many years herself means she is in a good position to observe what is – and isn’t – working during inspections.
But the value of service user involvement in improving social care services is “still doubted” by many, delegates heard.