Progress Made In Council’s Care For The Elderly

Care for the elderly in Waltham Forest has improved, according to a new report. The Commission for Social Care Inspection (CSCI) said progress is being made in Waltham Forest Council’s social care services for older people, and that most people using it received a good standard of care. Although the report also said the council can do still more to improve care for older people, the verdict was a significant step up from the “poor” rating the department received in 2002.

Presenting the report to the cabinet, lead inspector Tim Willis told councillors: “This is an evening to be proud, to be focussed and to start looking very carefully at your action plan.”

The inspection was carried out in March and aimed to find if elderly people and carers were receiving a service that promoted their independence.

The council was also assessed on how well it was putting Government policies on social care in place. Overall, CSCI found Waltham Forest Council served most older people well and that it promised further improvement.

The report said that most service users were happy with the treatment they received, and singled out the council’s efforts to fight inequality and serve all parts of the community. The department was also commended for staying on budget and for cutting costs across the service, although long-term financial planning was described as “uncertain”.

Other areas needing improvement were the consultation and complaints process and the council’s out-of-hours service, which was described as under-developed.

CSCI has also recommended that the council draws up detailed plans for future investment in older people’s services, and reviews the way it awards grants for disabled people because currently they can take too long to process.