Social Sciences

Working Together
The purpose of this assignment is to discuss the importance of partnership working between service users and professionals within a health and social care environment. It will also describe some of the approaches used and the challenges and difficulties faced when working in a collaborative manner. To illustrate the discussion I will be referencing the case study attached as Appendix A to this assignment. This essay aims to highlight some of the issues that may affect children and young adults with physical and learning disabilities with a specific emphasis on how partnership working can affect them and the families who care for them. By determining the different agencies and their individual and collective roles and responsibilities and determining the most effective approach to some difficult circumstances there should be a positive outcome for all involved parties.
The concept of collaborative working is referred to extensively in health and social care literature. Partnership working requires representatives from different professions, organisations and agencies to work together to identify, plan and deliver the best possible outcomes for service users and their families. A more specific definition is provided by Wood and Gray (1991):
“Collaboration occurs when a group of autonomous stakeholders of a problem domain engage in an interactive process, using shared rules, norms, and structures, to act or decide on issues relating to that domain”
The area where there has been fundamental progress in partnership working is within families, children and young people. The Victoria Climbie case, and Lord Laming’s subsequent report Laming (2003) and recommendations identified that partnership working should be a priority when providing services. In a formal response to these findings the Government issued a green paper called Every Child Matters ultimately resulting in the Childrens Act 2004 and the Education Act 2005. The focus of these Acts was to...