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Measuring satisfaction with social care amongst older service users: issues from the literature

Bauld L, Chesterman J & Judge K (2000) Measuring satisfaction with social care amongst older service users: issues from the literature, Health and Social Care in the Community, 8 (5), pp. 316-324.

Issues of quality and accountability in social care for older people are of increasing importance. A key factor in determining quality is the extent to which older people themselves are satisfied with both the assessment of their needs and the services provided. The 1997 White Paper, Modernising Social Services, stated that local authorities will need to establish authority-wide objectives and performance measures to improve the quality and efficiency of services. In measuring quality, the White Paper stipulated that social service departments would need to design and administer satisfaction surveys as one means of capturing user and carer perceptions and experiences of services. This paper attempts to highlight some of the main issues to be considered when designing and conducting such surveys with older users of community care services. Through a review of the British and North American literature on older people's satisfaction with services, current approaches to measuring satisfaction are outlined and the relationship between the characteristics and circumstances of older people and their responses to satisfaction questions is examined. The paper concludes by offering some solutions to overcoming current problems by drawing conclusions about quality from survey findings, so that older people's opinions about the services they receive can begin to be assessed in a more meaningful way.

care manager; community care; informal carer; older people; satisfaction

AuthorsBauld Linda, Chesterman John, Judge Ken
Publication date09/2000
ISSN 0966-0410

Health and Social Care in the Community: Volume 8, Issue 5 (SEP 2000)

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