Posted by: ayrshirehealth | August 10, 2012

Glass half full – AHPs and assets based approach to service delivery by @johnahpd

 Glass half full – how AHPs are adopting assets based approaches to service delivery

The current agenda for the integration of health and social care will present real challenges for services, not only in service structure but more fundamentally in the way that we deliver services into the future.  Seven key outcomes have been described for health and social care integration:

 Health and Care Integration Outcomes

1.  Healthier Living – Individual and communities are able and motivated to look after and improve their health and wellbeing, resulting in more people living in good health for longer, with reduced health inequalities.

2.  Independent Living – People with disabilities, long term conditions or who become frail are able to live as safely and independently as possible in the community, and have control over their care and support.

3. Positive experiences and outcomes – People have positive experience of health, social care and support services, which help to maintain or improve their quality of life.

4. Carers are supported – People who provide unpaid care to others are supported and able to maintain their own health and wellbeing.

5. Services are safe – People using health, social care and support services are safe-guarded from harm and have their dignity and human rights respected.

6. Engaged workforce – People who work in health and social services are positive about their role and supported to improve the care and treatment they provide.

7. Effective resource use – The most effective use is made of resources across health and social care services, avoiding waste and unnecessary variation.

A Glass Half Full

‘A Glass Half Full; how an asset approach can improve community health and well-being2’ captures a vision of communities, our staff and service user’s, as assets that we can work with and build upon. By adopting this approach we can motivate, respect, support, enable and work in partnership to foster wellbeing and thereby deliver the seven outcomes above.

This is the opposite approach to a ‘glass half empty’ deficits model whereby problems, need and deficiency drive services to ‘gap fill’ and look outwith their resource for solutions.

AHPs are already beginning to adopt asset building as an integral part of their service planning and delivery in Ayrshire and Arran. The following are current examples of these:

Service Asset building characteristics
Realising PotentialA three year programme to help AHP’s better support people with mental health problems, both within mental health services and the community Through asset mapping within AHP services Realising Potential has built knowledge and therefore the capacity to improve access direct patient careFollowing this activity groups have been established in local communities to improve mental and physical health of service user’s by motivating and goal setting‘Actively Engaged’ the provision of on-line resources for service user’s and providers
Macmillan Nutrition Education Programme An on line resource for all people who may be involved in the provision of care (including self care) for people affected by cancer By engaging with service user’s at the outset, patients and carer’s became the driver for the design and delivery of a successful education programme.Service user’s knowledge and insight have supported and motivated staff to change their approach to care provision
‘Positive Steps’A partnership approach between health and local authority to reduce falls and promote independent living ‘This project has really helped empower older people in sheltered housing by giving them the knowledge and information needed to help them prevent a trip or a fall. This enables them to lead independent lives, and boosts their self confidence which makes a real difference to them on a day to day basis”

We would recognise however that the asset based approach requires a paradigm shift to become mainstreamed into our thinking at both an individual and service level. We have an enormous challenge in moving away from paternalistic care; we must be willing to share power, thereby truly enabling service user’s to be partners in their care.  Only in this way can we assure service sustainability and the delivery of the integrated health and social care outcomes.


Integration of Adult Health and Social Care in Scotland, Consultation on Proposals,

John McConway (@johnahpd) is the Interim Associate Director for the Allied Health Professions in NHS Ayrshire & Arran

Next weeks blog comes from:

Student mental health nurse @laurengoudie reflects on her experience and understanding of recovery, from the perspective of a  student mental health nurse.


  1. […] Glass half full – AHPs and assets based approach to service delivery by John McConway on the Ayrshire Health blog. Share this:TwitterFacebookLinkedInPinterestMoreEmailRedditPrintDiggStumbleUponTumblrLike this:LikeBe the first to like this. This entry was posted in communities, health, health services, public sector, social care, working practices by weeklyblogclub. Bookmark the permalink. […]

  2. […] people with care needs was key to John McConway’s post, Glass half full – AHPs and assets based approach to service delivery. At a time when his area’s health and social services are being merged, he considered a […]

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