December 2018 performance
The annual statutory Adult Social Care Survey takes place in all councils with social services responsibilities in England, the Survey tales place between January and March each year, the next survey will be issued week commencing 28th January 2019.
 Between January – March 2018 Adults’ Services undertook some follow-up local research with 210 respondents to the 2016-17 Adult Social Care Survey. These respondents had self-identified as wanting to be involved in any follow-up research. We decided to test their views on 13 questions specifically in relation to ‘social contact’. Sixty people (29% of those sent this survey) responded.
 There were three key messages for service improvement:
1.   keeping people informed;
What we did: Our information offer to local residents about Adults’ Services: This is routed through from the County Council’s website to the West Sussex Connect to Support website and Google Analytics are used to track activity. The design and content of this external website was comprehensively reviewed in 2018 and members of our standing consultation group, the Adults’ Services Customer and Carer Group, were involved. Our suite of printed adult social care publications, which are widely circulated across the county (including to libraries), are subject to annual review and updating.
 2.   provide transport; and
What we did: Access to transport provision: this was identified as a barrier to social engagement. None of the respondents to this particular survey had got a known learning disability although some did identify that additional care support might be needed by some people to enable them to access to transport. There could potentially be scope for people with a learning disability to learn about and receive individualised support about accessing community and public transport, some work is done in this regard for people with a learning disability by WorkAid in order to support individuals towards employability.
 3.   provide person-centred care and support. 
What we did: Person centred care and support: Adults’ Services is mainstreaming the Supporting Lives Connecting People programme. We are aiming to reduce social isolation as one of the outcomes of this  programme, as social workers and OTs enable people to link with local community support.
A Task and Finish Group with representatives from Public Health, the Communities Team and the three NHS Clinical Commissioning Groups in the county has been established focusing on social isolation and loneliness. This Group is taking a paper to the Public Health Board on 12th  January 2019 with recommendations around a two-year action plan to tackle some of the underlying issues.

February 2018 Performance

There was a small reduction in the outcome score for 2017. Consequently the Adult Services Quality and Improvement Team are undertaking a follow up survey with approximately 200 customers to ask more in-depth questions relating to social contact. The closing date for this survey is the 31st March 2018 and the results will be collated and analysed by the Public Health Research Team. Any recommendations for further work on this topic will then be considered and taken forward.

Background

This measure comes from the results of annual survey. It relies on the service users choosing to respond to the survey and is perception based. We do have the opportunity to have a direct impact on those responding because we take the opportunity to follow up with individuals. The team are currently making arrangements to communicate with those who feel they are lacking social contact to discuss what can be done to improve this. It is also anticipated that in future years the impact of the proposed new operating model will help people be less socially isolated.