Working in adult social care at this time provides opportunities to make a real difference by enabling those people you support to lead more active, safe and fulfilled lifestyles of their choice.
We recognise the many challenges being faced with reducing resources so we want to ensure that our service users get the right support provided, in the right way and at the right time.
The number of adults, particularly those who are older needing support, is growing and will continue to do so in the future. Their needs are becoming more complex as they live longer, coping with long-term conditions such as dementia.
This does mean we have to undergo change. It is an exciting time with opportunities to work together with our efficiency partner to see how we can redesign those things we have always done and explore how to do them differently. We will be working in new and smarter ways using technology to support us.
This will affect all aspects of our work in adult social care including how we commission services, our relationships with providers and how we involve those who we support to achieve improved outcomes and reduce duplication.
We have already started on this journey – transforming adult social care in Kent.
We have recently realigned ourselves in social care to be co-terminus with our health partners and clinical commissioning groups as part of the integration health and social care agenda.
As the new Assistant Director for Older People and Physical Disability in Dartford, Gravesham, Swanley and Swale, I recognise the importance of strong leadership needed to support my team of skilled and competent practitioners and support staff to work differently.
I want the best for those we support in Dartford, Gravesham, Swanley and Swale and this is only possible as a team effort with everyone playing their part. I believe we already have the foundations in place for an effective service and I am now committed to sustaining and building on those improvements. This means creating a culture of continuous improvement as part of a learning organisation which fosters good practice, where staff are encouraged to be innovative and creative, share ideas and collaboration exists.
This means offering staff regular supervision, time for reflection, opportunities for professional development and career progression as well as committed leadership.
My ultimate goal is to promote and develop confident, knowledgeable and well-supported adult social care staff that are committed to always putting the customer first, delivering improved outcomes and working in partnership to the highest standards of practice.
Jane Barnes, Assistant Director (Dartford, Gravesham, Swanley and Swale)