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Mental Health Services

Volume 474: debated on Monday 31 March 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps will be taken to safeguard the provision of mental health advocacy services not linked to the operation of the Mental Health Act or Mental Capacity Act. (189262)

“Putting People First: a shared vision and commitment to the transformation of Adult Social Care” sets out, for the first time, the vision, ambitions and components of the future system in one place. In particular, it recognises the need to empower citizens to shape their own lives, the support they receive, and the role that access to universal information and advocacy will play in making this a reality.

The Social Care Reform Grant provides three years of ring-fenced funding to support councils to undertake the necessary reforms to deliver this transformation. Councils will be expected to have made significant steps towards redesigning and reshaping their adult social care services (in the light of their Joint Strategic Needs Assessments), to have the core components of a personalised system in place by 2011.

One of the core components of a transformed adult social care system is a universal, joined-up information and advice available for all individuals and carers, including those who self-assess and fund. The grant determination is clear that links to advocacy and support services will need to be considered where individuals do not have a carer or in circumstances where they require support to articulate their needs and/or utilise the personal budget.