Written by Well-being and Improvement Branch at Welsh Government

The Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act 2014 (‘the Act’) came into force in April 2016.  The Act provides the legal framework for improving the well-being of people who need care and support, and carers who need support, and for transforming social services in Wales.  

As part of the development of the Act, in 2016 the Social Services and Improvement Division within the Welsh Government established a series of performance indicators, measures and outcomes frameworks to measure the impact of the Act on the well-being outcomes of people who need care and support and carers who need support.  

The well-being needs of the people receiving support from social services are a key priority at the Welsh Government. It was with this in mind that we set about developing a more comprehensive Performance and Improvement Framework which links in to the Well-being of Future Generations (Wales) Act 2015 as well as the Social Services and Well-being (Wales) Act 2014. 

The new approach

The new approach aims to encourage a deeper understanding of experiences of individuals who use social services and the impact these services are having. Through this greater understanding, we can support improvement within the sector so that ultimately the well-being outcomes of individuals who receive care and support can be improved. 

The new approach has been developed to focus on performance and improvement equally.  It includes the development of new Quality Standards alongside a new Performance and Improvement Framework. 

The new performance and improvement framework for social services in Wales consists of the code of practice as well as a series of guidance documents. The framework and supporting guidance brings together a number of key elements into a single toolkit for local authorities to use in their understanding of how social care is delivered locally and nationally and the impact it has on the well-being of individuals in Wales. It will focus on three key areas; Measuring Activity and Performance, Understanding Experience and Outcomes and Using Evidence to Drive Improvement.

The Welsh Government have worked collaboratively with local authorities and other partners within the sector to gather high quality data and evidence so that together we can fully understand and improve how social services are delivered across Wales as well as assessing the impact that this has on the well-being of the people who live in Wales.