Advocacy – care providers need to play a bigger role
While the role of independent advocates in social care is being increasingly recognised, recent research suggests care providers could do more to facilitate their clients’ access to advocacy services
A study undertaken by researchers exploring the use of advocacy by older people over the age of 65 has shown that only a quarter of service providers had referred a service user for advocacy.
The study, conducted by Geraldine Brown, research fellow and Nicola Standen, research associate at the Applied Research Centre in Sustainable Regeneration, Coventry University, found that many service providers recognised the beneficial role advocacy could play in meeting the needs of people aged 65 and over with mental health needs.
A significant proportion, 88%, of the service providers questioned – including care assistants, managers, service co-ordinators and support workers – reported that they thought advocacy would be beneficial, to some extent, for the service users they worked with. Advocacy was thought to be beneficial for providing service users with support in a variety of circumstances including support with financial issues.