Institute seeks expertise

The expertise of users, carers and practitioners will be just as
important as academic research in the work of the Social Care
Institute of Excellence.

Amanda Edwards, head of social services quality strategy at the
Department of Health, told a conference last week that Scie would
be using evidence from SSI and joint review inspections and user,
practitioner and manager perspectives, as well as academic research

Finding the “lost voice of the practitioners” would be one of
its tasks, she told an event in Hove, Sussex, organised by the
Social Services Research Group. Edwards said the government’s
quality strategy for social care must engage not only large public
sector organisations but also a large number of small private
businesses, as a growing proportion of provision is in the private

Scie should be up and running this year, she said, but the
process of building the “knowledge base” would be gradual. It would
commission some work, do some work itself, review existing research
and identify other sources of knowledge.

Edwards said one of the government’s aims for Scie was to create
a workforce confident about why it does what it does and so to
create more equal partnerships with other professionals.

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