Share your stories of Self-directed Support

16 January 2017
woman boarding bus

Scotland’s public spending watchdog is encouraging people who use self-directed support to share their experiences in a new survey.

Self-directed Support (SDS) represented a major change to the way social care services are provided. The aim of SDS is for people to have more choice and control of their social care support - including where, when and how they receive services. At the same time, the social care sector faces significant challenges, such as budget pressures and increasing demand.

Audit Scotland is currently looking at how well councils, integration authorities and the Scottish Government are implementing the policy. The report, which is scheduled to be published in summer 2017, will follow up on our 2014 audit, which found that councils still had a substantial amount of work to do to make self-directed support a success.

As part of the fieldwork for the 2017 audit, the team writing the report is keen to hear the views of anyone who uses self-directed support. We’d like to hear from people from a range of ages and backgrounds, and with all types of support needs. Carers are also invited to contribute.

Auditor Zoe McGuire, who is part of the team carrying out the 2017 audit, said: “One of the key questions for us is whether self-directed support improves the quality of life of the people who use it. We want to know what it’s really like for people using it – from the moment they apply for SDS to making the choices that are right for them, and ultimately how it affects their daily life. We will only really understand people’s experiences if we hear directly from those who are using SDS.

She added: “We understand that a few people might prefer to chat to us informally rather than fill out a survey – and that’s something we’d really encourage. Equally, if you’ve filled in the survey but want to expand a little on a certain area, or feel like there’s something more we should know, please get in touch with us.”

Read Zoe’s blog to find out more or click here to take part in the survey, which runs until 27 February.

For media enquiries, please get in touch with Kate Martin on 0131 625 1661 or by email to