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Social Services To Launch Costs Probe

Coventry’s social services department has shown a big improvement in several areas, but still needs to do better, according to a government review.

Performance indicators published today by the Department of Health show that the majority of services are graded between “acceptable” and “very good”.

But three areas have been highlighted as needing “urgent investigation”.

These are: support given for admitting older people to residential or nursing care; the inspection of residential care for adults; and the percentage of the items of equipment costing less than £1,000 which are delivered to the person in need within three weeks.

Services earmarked for praise were reviews of child protection cases, inspection of children’s homes and services for adult with disabilities helped to live at home.

Coventry was compared with 13 other authorities with a similar size and type of population.

While it came bottom in the table for delivering equipment to people who needed it, it moved to sixth in the list of the amount of child protection cases carried out.

Last year’s figure of 95 per cent was hailed as a big improvement on the 1998-99 figure of 80 per cent.

Half of the 20 categories were deemed good to very good, but eight other areas were marked out for needing improvement.

These were: costs for residential and nursing care for adults with learning disabilities, mental illness and physical disabilities; the cost of services for children looked after, costs for foster care, the amount being spent on family support, the amount of time children spend on the protection register and the number of adoptions of “looked after” children.

Cllr Kevin Maton, cabinet member (social services) said:

“It is encouraging that in the majority of areas our services are deemed acceptable to very good.

“However we still have some way to go to ensure that all our services remain consistently good year after year.

“It is a concern that three areas need urgent investigation while other areas need questions asking, and this will be done immediately.

”We are committed to improving performance and becoming the best, in order for people needing our services to receive the highest quality of service available.”

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CWN / Politics / Coventry City Council / 13 Oct 00
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