Advice and opinions

Social Care Column with Mark Topps: Collaboration

Mark Topps's latest instalment focuses on the importance of collaboration in the social care sector. Check it out now!

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Mark Topps
Mark Topps
Regional Business Manager
Published on:
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8-minute read

Social care has been in the media spotlight for the last sixteen months more than ever before, with recent attention regarding whether the government will reform the sector or not. I believe many of us working within the sector have long given up hope of any 1948 NHS moment.

Nevertheless, we have seen some amazing collaboration between care providers, those of us that work within the sector, and more networking than ever before.

Sharing information

One of the biggest changes over the last few years is the rise of Facebook groups for specific social care roles such as groups for managers, care coordinators, and deputies. These groups allow us to share ideas with people who do the same job, network, and overall build best practice.

As technology improves, so does our ability to connect with others, have conversations and increase our knowledge and mindset. Apps such as Clubhouse, Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin and Whatsapp all allow us to connect and speak to people. We can have those honest discussions about issues we are facing, what is working well within our organisations and teams and share ideas of how to overcome these.

Increase in networking

I have seen a huge surge of networking since the pandemic started, perhaps because we were isolated from each other. Or maybe it was because the pandemic was such an unknown and we wanted to reassure ourselves that what we were doing was correct and to see what everyone else was doing.

Whatever the reason, these connections have led to many public conversations and highlighted how we can improve processes such as sharing ideas on recruitment, how to market a business, what to do in certain situations, how to utilise social media and so much more.

Growth of working parties

There are many of us working within the sector that feel like we can do so much more together than on our own. There are numerous working parties already established and more popping up which are made up of people from different roles within the social care sector. Our sole aim is to improve the sector and address areas where we fall short and put steps into place to correct those issues and move forward as one.

What I personally love about these working parties is that it gets us all thinking of a brighter and better care system. We want a system that puts the people who need our services at the heart of our decisions and one that means people are talking, networking, sharing best practice and removing those stigmas of social care. We hope it will pave the way to highlighting just how amazing the care sector can be both to access and to work within.

Collaboration with families of those in care

Collaboration is not just about those of us that work within the social care sector but is also about how we connect those using our services with their friends and family and the COVID19 pandemic has definitely improved communication for the better.

As a sector we are seeing the increased use of technology, such as using social media to keep in touch. We’ve also seen care management systems, like Log my Care, that have relative portals which not only enhances the care delivery but also keeps people who use our services closer to their loved ones whilst ensuring that everyone within the individuals social circle is up to date with their care, well-being and health.

Through our collaboration as Carers, we are seeing how important it is to have relatives involved in their loved one’s care to improve mental health and social stimulation. In turn, this has also meant that relatives feel more informed, involved and part of the organisation.

The more we work together, the more positive change we can accomplish

I am truly looking forward to the new initiatives that care services will begin to implement as we ease out of lockdown. There are only positives with sharing information and collaborating with one another and ultimately this directly improves the quality of care that we can provide to those using our care services.

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