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17 AUG 2012

NICE consults on new social care quality standard for looked-after children

The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) has launched a consultation on a new quality standard for the health and wellbeing of looked-after children and young people.

The Health and Social Care Act (2012) set out a new responsibility for NICE to develop quality standards and other guidance for social care in England. NICE has been asked by the Department for Education and the Department of Health to pilot the development of a quality standard for social care on the health and wellbeing of looked after children and young people for use in England.

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Dr Gillian Leng, Deputy Chief Executive and Director of Health and Social Care at NICE said: "As part of our preparation for taking on our new role in social care in April 2013, we are currently running a pilot programme for developing social care quality standards.

"Although NICE has been producing quality standards for health care since 2010, these will be the first standards for social care."

The consultation is seeking views on how to increase looked-after children's involvement in how  their lives are managed and provide them with greater say in decisions relating to their care. This includes offering looked-after children a choice of placements and ensuring that they are offered continued access to support services to ensure that they move to independence at their own pace.

Proposals to offer ongoing training to carers of looked-after children and of young people are also included in the consultation to enable them to better support children and young people in their care.

The consultation will run from 16 August until 16 October 2012.

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