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My Support, My Choice

My Support, My Choice: User Experiences of Self-directed Support in Scotland

Pink PDF button          Green button for Easy Read version of report

Reports and findings

Between November 2018 and February 2020, over 600 people who received Self-directed Support (SDS) in Scotland – or had been assessed in the previous 12 months – took part in the largest direct consultation of SDS to date.  

Today, we release the findings of the project between Self Directed Support Scotland and the Health and Social Care Alliance Scotland, funded by the Scottish Governmentwhich includes vital evidence, analysis and recommendations for improvement to SDS / social care in the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic, based on people’s experiences. 

The My Support, My Choice: User Experiences of Self-directed Support in Scotland” (MSMC) report covers the following topics: 

  • Information about SDS 
  • Informed choice and control  
  • Communication and relationships with social work 
  • Impact of SDS on family/relationships  
  • SDS and mental health  
  • Care staff recruitment, training and quality  
  • Independent advocacy and support  

Research participants acknowledged SDS as important to achieving a higher quality of life and independent living. However, there are some key improvements that would respond to people’s concerns, build on existing good practice and increase the effectiveness and reach of positive SDS / social care experiences. The views expressed by research participants and analysis of the findings have led to a number of recommendations, many of which echo other independent reviews of SDS. 

My Support, My Choice: User Experiences of Self-directed Support in Scotland is now available to read online, with an Easy Read version available too  

Blue speech bubble with quote from SDSS Chief Exec Donald Macleod saying "we will engage with Scottish Government, as their delivery partner in the implementation of the SDS Strategy, in order to operationalise the learning from My Support My Choice."

The main MSMC report released today is part of a suite of MSMC reports. In the coming weeks thematic reports will be published, exploring the experiences of people with learning disabilities, Black and minority ethnic people, people with lived experience of mental health problems, blind and partially sighted people, and women as users of SDS. 

Keep up to date with SDSS and My support, My Choice by following both Self Directed Support Scotland and Health and Social Care Alliance Scotland on social media.  

Next steps

We will also be running feedback sessions across Scotland. Significant interest from Local Authorities and Health and Social Care Partnerships in the findings may support local planning, given its reflection of the diversity of the local application of the statute. We look forward to a positive dialogue with those funding SDS, informed by this richness of experience.

COVID-19 update: due to the quickly developing situation with COVID-19, all local feedback sessions for MSMC are postponed. New dates and venues will be agreed and advertised when possible. The ALLIANCE and SDSS have also taken the difficult decision to delay publication of local reports so that Local Authorities can prioritise front-line service provision. Thematic reports and the Scotland report are due to be published online later this year.

If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact: research@sdsscotland.org.uk