An Investigation of Principles, Care Strategies and Theories Related to Social Care Practice
This section provides a summative assessment of the principles, care strategies and theories that direct social care work within the UK. Specifically, the application of support principles, procedures for protecting clients from harm and the advantages of utilising a person-centred approach in working with clients are discussed. Additionally, ethical issues, applicable policies, legislation issues and regulation and the impacts of existing policies are presented in relation to providing social care.
Applications of Support Principles
Ensuring that individuals are properly cared for in health and social care requires the application of a number of support principles. Examples of these support principles include equity in the provision of care, universality in its accessibility and providing multiple financial options for individuals of all backgrounds (Alcock, Daly & Griggs, 2008). As the individuals who require health and social care services differ in their ethnic, cultural, social and socioeconomic backgrounds, these support principles are pivotal in meeting the needs of the greatest percentage of the population (Alcock et al., 2008). Valuing diversity and providing support for families of varying backgrounds is a critical component of UK health and social care policy (Alcock et al., 2008).
Procedures for Protecting Clients from Harm
Protecting clients from harm is another important consideration for social care home managers within the UK. Generally, clients taking advantage of social care services are in vulnerable positions, and face financial, psychological or medical difficulties that make them prone to potential harm or abuse (Alcock, May & Rowlingson, 2008). The practise of safeguarding social care receivers is critical to preventing such abuse (Alcock et al., 2008). Current National Health Service (NHS, 2012) policy mandates that health and social care workers adhere to strict procedures for preventing neglect or abuse. Practitioners are held accountable for the services they provide, as well as their efforts to empower clients, protect their confidentiality and basic human rights and taking any additional measures necessary to protect vulnerable clients (NHS, 2012).
Benefits of the Person-Centred Approach
The person-centred approach guides all current UK health and social care practice (Edwards, 2012). This model of care, based on the early therapeutic work of Carl Rogers, emphasises protecting the individual rights of clients, and making decisions in a manner that best meets their unique needs (Moon, 2008). While this term is used frequently in other health and social care systems, many find themselves actually relying on financial and political considerations when planning care (Moon, 2008). The NHS prides itself on placing client satisfaction in the spotlight and enacting legislation that protects this person-centred approach, such as the Human Rights and Equality Acts (NHS, 2012). The advantages of this model range from increased client satisfaction, the ability to reach individuals from a diverse range of ethnic and financial backgrounds and more effective case outcomes (Edwards, 2012).
Ethical Dilemmas and Conflicts
Health and social care is a field rife with potential ethical dilemmas and conflicts.