Association for Care, Training & Assessment Networks (ACTAN) is an organisation dedicated to proactively providing current and relevant information regarding regulation, legislation, qualifications, and workforce development implications that impact the health and social care sector.

ACTAN has representation at both regional and national level with key stakeholders: including Skills for Care, Skills for Care and Development, National Skills Academy for Adult Social Care, National Apprenticeship steering group.

They have brought our attention to the new Department of Health guidance released on Giving adults voice, choice and control in social care. The guidance provides guidance on how registered nurses, care and support staff can enable relationship-centred care, and how they can work with others to achieve personalised care and support.

The guidance is for staff across a range of care settings, including care home staff and carers who look after people in their own homes and how staff in social care settings can ensure adults get personalised care and support.

This document provides guidance on how registered nurses, care and support staff across a range of care settings, including care home staff and carers who look after people in their own homes, can enable relationship-centred care, and how they can work with others to achieve personalised care and support.

The six core elements set out below are for all health and care practitioners, with registered nurses and managers having particular roles. Evidence suggests that good care and support stems from strong relationships between the person being supported, their family and friends and care staff. A shared vision is needed that places individuals’ needs at the centre so that all people receiving care and support, whatever the setting, can say:

  • Care: Good experiences: supporting people to experience the care and support they choose, in a variety of settings and at all stages of life, including the end of life. Ensuring adequate access to healthcare services and promoting health to optimise quality of life.
  • Compassion: Working creatively with people to help them design the personalised care and support they want, maintain their sense of identity and engage in meaningful activity. Facilitating the involvement of service users, relatives and staff in shared decision-making and sensibly managing any risks which may arise
  • Competence: Competence to ensure people have real control over resources; open, transparent and independent processes; and engaged local communities. Support is culturally sensitive in the context of a person’s life and preferences. The needs of any carers are understood and addressed.
  • Communication: Caring conversations: ensuring communication is considerate and supports people by providing information, advice and assistance to make decisions about care and support. Co-ordinating: Communicating with other agencies to provide seamless care across different settings
  • Courage: Quality of care and support is promoted through giving those needing care and support real voice, choice and control. Ensuring people receive safe care and are free from harm – and speaking up to challenge poor or inadequate care
  • Commitment: Identifying and meeting training needs within the social care workforce. Developing leadership, management and expertise to deliver a culture of care which is responsive to individual needs.  Promoting positive relationships between service users, carers and staff.

To enable relationship-centred care registered nurses, care and support staff need to take the lead in these six areas:

  • Maximising health and well-being – Helping people to stay independent
  • Working with people to provide a positive experience
  • Commissioning and delivering care
  • Building and strengthening leadership
  • Ensuring the right staff, with the right skills, are in the right place
  • Supporting positive staff experience