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4.1c Effective Partnership Working

The hands of two individuals joined together in a handshake representing partnership working

List the key features of effective partnership working – these may be different for different types of partnerships.

Effective partnership working involves two or more groups coming together to achieve a common aim or purpose. The benefits include pooled resources, sharing of expertise and responsibility/power. For it to work there must be mutual respect and understanding between the partners and a level of trust.

Consider how you might strengthen those networks.

Partnerships can be strengthened by sharing information, knowledge and expertise as well as each party being trustworthy and reliable. Over time, these bonds should improve. Regular meetings and communication between all parties is also essential for partnership working to be successful.

Consider how you might measure the effectiveness of these relationships – what you need to do, who needs to be involved and how often.

As stated above regular communication is paramount for effective partnership working. Representatives from each party should meet regularly to discuss ideas and progress. Ideally, these would be the same representatives each time. Efficacy should be measured by the outcomes that that are produced, which should be in line with the initial goals agreed by all parties.

4.1b Identify one person you work with and find out how you might support them to have better links with their community. Make sure you discuss it with them and maybe even a carer or relative.

What can help them to maintain their involvement or achieve their goals? Together with the
individual identify one or two links which might be developed to add value to their life. Identify in
particular how this partnership might ensure better outcomes for the individual. Reflect on how
you might encourage those links further and what you might need to put into practice to support
and maintain them.

I work with a client that was quite lonely and expressed that he wanted to have friends and a girlfriend, however he seldom left the house and therefore never had the opportunities to meet people.

I spoke to the client several times to explain that the only way to meet people that could become friends would be to go out and join local groups or take part in activities. Then we researched various activities in the local area that he could try out to see if he liked them.

Over a period of several weeks, we went to several activities, most of which he didn’t like but there were some he enjoyed and so he continued to participate. These were two local discos for people with learning disabilities and a games night (darts, pool etc.) This resulted in a partnership between the client, his staff and the activity organisers.

Over time, he made friends and eventually got himself a girlfriend. This resulted in further partnership links between his staff team and his friends/girlfriend’s staff teams.

4.1a Identify new networks that might support the service you provide and the business. These could be social or professional. They may be to support staff, the people who access care and support, or to support yourself.

Group of professionals holding hands representing partnership working

You could carry out this exercise with your staff, or a group of residents, or relatives group. You
might be surprised at some of the suggestions!

Potential Partner
1. Registered Managers Network6. Care Quality Commission
2. Social Services7. Local Colleges
3. Local Charities8. Local Activity Groups
4. Chamber of Commerce9. Community Nurses
5. Skills for Care10. Pharmacies

Carry out a strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats (SWOT) analysis of partnership
working with current partners as well as possible new ones.

StrengthsWeaknessesOpportunitiesThreats
  • Combined knowledge
  • Teamwork
  • Poaching Staff/Clients
  • May be disagreements
  • Can work on future projects together
  • Different agendas could mean being forced into something that is not beneficial to us

3.3b Information Sharing Case Study (Mrs. Horton)

Old lady in Hospital Bed (Mrs. Horton)

Mrs Horton is 81 years old and has lived alone in her two bedroomed house for many years. She is frail and has difficulty moving around due to chronic obstructive pulmonary disease which leaves her breathless after only a little exertion. She has home care visits, three times a day to support her with getting up, getting lunch, and preparing her evening meal whilst also helping her to undress for bed. She has a stair lift to help her upstairs where the only available toilet is.

She has a son who lives locally but works away most of the time and she has a daughter who lives 200 miles away and is unable to drive. A friend collects her to take her to church every week and another friend takes her to the hairdressers every week. Currently she also has a visit from the diabetic nurse every week.

Two weeks ago, she had a fall and was admitted to hospital. Following observation and some treatment, she is now ready to return home, with new medication.

Use this template to consider information that should be shared to support Mrs Horton.

Consider what information needed to be shared at the point of admission.
InformationBy whomWith whomWhen
Name, address, details of accidentParamedicsHospital admissionsAdmission
Medical history and current medicationPrimary Care (GP, Diabetes Nurse)Hospital admissionsAdmission
Mrs. Horton’s condition (if consent given)Hospital NursesMrs Horton’s Family and Friends and Support StaffAdmission
Consider what information needed to be shared before Mrs. Horton returns home.
InformationBy whomWith whomWhen
New Medication and ConditionHospitalMrs Horton’s Family/Friends/Support StaffDischarge
Medication, treatment and ConditionHospitalPrimary Care (GP, Diabetes Nurse)Discharge
What steps do you need to take in order to share this information?
Where possible, consent should be obtained from Mrs. Horton before any information sharing goes ahead. Where this is not possible, a judgment call will need to be made and information should only be shared on a need to know basis
Consider the possible consequences of not sharing information in this situation
Family, friends and support staff would worry about Mrs. Horton when they visited her home and found her not there. Medical professionals would not have full access to her medical history and current medication so may give her inaccurate advice (e.g. putting her on medication which is incompatible with medication she is already taking). Medical staff would not know her name or how to address her.

3.3a Find out what consent model your organisation employs for personal data of people who access care and support

describe a situation where this has been put into practice

When contracting us to provide their care and support, clients are informed that staff may share their information with other professionals and/or their families as long as it is in their best interests and on a need-to-know basis. Clients can choose to sign to agree to this or not.

A client I work with had agreed to this, which meant that I was able to share details of his support plan with his social worker so that she could complete his assessment.

Describe how the situation would have been handled differently if an alternative consent model had been adopted

By having a cover-all consent model as long as it is best interests, the social worker was able to complete her assessment quickly without having to ask the client for consent multiple times.

What impact would this have had on the individual?

If the client were to be repeatedly asked for consent, this may have resulted in them becoming bored and lack motivation to complete the assessment. It could also result in them becoming upset or angry.

Conversely, if the client had not been asked for consent at all, as well as breaking the law this may have resulted in them feeling less valued, lower self-esteem and lower confidence.

compare the ethical and moral dilemmas involved in both models

Both opt-in and opt-out consent models allow the individual to make an informed choice.