This report provides the findings from the Adult Social Care Outcomes Framework (ASCOF) in England for the period 1 April 2014 to 31 March 2015. The ASCOF draws on data from a number of collections; details of these data sources and which measures they are used for can be found in the Data Sources chapter within this report. Further details of the measures, including the purpose of the framework, can be found in the ASCOF Handbook of Definitions, which is published by the Department of Health.
Please note: As part of the 2015-16 validation round, councils were invited to resubmit SALT 2014-15 data. 50 councils submitted restated data to NHS Digital and the revised data are now available as part of the 2015-16 SALT publication. Additionally, this restated data has been used to refresh the 2014-15 SALT-based indicators contained within the 2015-16 ASCOF publication. Links to these outputs are available in the Related Links, below.
The ASCOF is part of a range of outcomes frameworks (alongside those of Public Health and the NHS) which collectively reflect the joint contribution of health and social care to improving outcomes. The ASCOF is used both locally and nationally to set priorities for care and support, measure progress and to strengthen transparency and accountability. Its purpose is three-fold:
- Locally, the ASCOF supports councils to improve the quality of care and support.
- The ASCOF fosters greater transparency in the delivery of adult social care, supporting local people to hold their council to account for the quality of the services they provide.
- Nationally, the ASCOF measures the performance of the adult social care system as a whole and its success in delivering high-quality, personalised care and support.
The ASCOF measures how well care and support services achieve the outcomes that matter most to people. The measures are grouped into four domains which are typically reviewed in terms of movement over time. A number of these measures however have seen changes to their source data or definition which have resulted in year-on-year comparisons not being appropriate. Time-based comparisons are therefore not always provided and further explanation can be found in Chapter 3 (Comparability). In summary however, the new Short and Long Term Support (SALT) data collection has replaced the previous activity (RAP and ASC-CAR) collections. This impacts on the following measures: 1C, 1E, 1G, 2A, 2B and 2D. Furthermore, the introduction of SALT has also affected the eligible population used in determining the Adult Social Care Survey (ASCS) samples. The following measures are therefore also impacted 1A, 1B, 1I(1), 3A, 3D(1), 4A and 4B.
As mentioned above, some of the measures included use survey data (the Adult Social Care Survey and the Survey of Adult Carers in England) and are therefore based on a sample of possible respondents. It is not possible to know the true value for the overall population in these cases however the variation present in the sampled data can be used to assess whether a change or difference is statistically significant. Where this is the case, statistical significance will be stated in the report. The non-survey-based measures use transactional data drawn from operational systems and so use all available data points. Any changes or differences presented, on the assumption of robust data quality, can therefore be taken as conclusive.
ASCOF Indicator 1J
The existing ASCOF Indicator 1A (Social Care related Quality of Life) tells us about the current (care-related) quality of life of people using social care. Following discussions in 2011 at the Outcomes and Information Development Board (OIDB), it was agreed that the Department of Health would commission a research project from the Quality and Outcomes of Person Centred Care Policy Research Unit (QORU) to develop a 'value added' measure of social care-related quality of life. This indicator, to be known as ASCOF Indicator 1J, will form part of the 2016-17 framework.
The summary paper below (IIASC Report Summary 2014-15) describes the background, methods and results of the QORU study; the application of this calculation to existing data flows to derive aggregate local authority-level data; and the interpretation of these individual and aggregate measures, again drawing on the QORU study. A section covering the impact of changing the source of the eligible population for the survey from RAP in 2013-14 to SALT in 2014-15, as well as the change from Primary Client Group to Primary Support Reason as part of the inclusion criteria, is also included. A dataset of local authority data (based on 2014-15 Adult Social Care Survey Submissions) is provided (IIASC Dataset 2014-15) along with a calculator (IIASC 2014-15 Calculator) to enable councils to calculate and analyse their individual-level scores using their own 2014-15 ASCS data return.
A similar dataset will be made available for 2015-16 in due course before this measure is included as part of the standard ASCOF reporting outputs for 2016-17.
For further details, QORU's papers detailing the conclusions of the research and development phase of their work can be found via the 'Related links' section below. Any queries or comments should be directed to [email protected] in the first instance.