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Survey of adults receiving social care and support services shows slight rise in reports of feeling safe

5 October 2017

NHS Digital must be quoted as the source of these figures

70.1 per cent of people receiving social services care feel "as safe as they want" according to the results of a survey published by NHS Digital1 today.

This is an increase of 0.9 percentage points from the previous year's report (2015-16)2.

Further to this, 86.4 per cent of service users reported that the care and support services they receive has helped them in feeling safe, up 1.0 percentage point from 2015-16 (85.4 per cent).

Personal Social Services Adult Social Care Survey (ASCS) England 2016-17 is an annual survey, which is conducted by Councils with Adult Social Services Responsibilities (CASSRs).

The survey, which is in its seventh year3, seeks the opinions of service users aged 18 and over, who are in receipt of long-term support services, which are funded or managed by social services.

Other key findings4 in this year's report include:

  • overall satisfaction: 64.7 per cent5 of service users were extremely or very satisfied with the care and support services they received
  • activities of daily living6: In 2016-17 there was a general increase in the proportion of service users who needed assistance with activities of daily living. This was statistically significant for six of the eight7 activities. These activities include dealing with finances and paperwork, getting dressed and bathing
  • choice: 67.6 per cent of service users in the community reported that they have enough choice over the care and support services they receive and a further 6.3 per cent reported they don't want or need choice
  • social contact: 45.4 per cent of service users reported they had as much social contact as they would like. Just over a fifth (21.6 per cent) reported that they did not have enough or had little social contact with 15.9 per cent reporting they had some social contact but not enough and 5.7 per cent reporting they had little social contact and felt socially isolated

The survey includes questions on the impact that care and support services have on a service user's quality of life.

It also collects information on the primary reasons for support and self-reported general health and well-being.

The report uses data collected from a sample of 72,6008 service users who participated in the survey and these are weighted to make inferences (or estimates) about the questionnaire responses for the whole eligible population (653,000 service users).

The purpose of the survey is to improve the adult social care sector's understanding of how services are affecting users' lives.

The Personal Social Services Adult Social Care Survey is available on the NHS Digital website.


Notes to editors

1. NHS Digital is the national information and technology provider for the health and care system. Our team of information analysis, technology and project management experts create, deliver and manage the crucial digital systems, services, products and standards upon which health and care professionals depend. During the 2016/17 financial year, NHS Digital published 292 statistical reports. Our vision is to harness the power of information and technology to make health and care better.

2. These results are statistically significant. This means that the differences between this year and last year are unlikely to be due to chance.

3. The survey took place for the seventh year in 2016-17, although as a result of changes to the eligible population in 2014-15 (as documented in the 2014-15 publication), it is not possible to make direct comparisons between data before 2014-15. Therefore, only comparisons to 2014-15 and 2015-16 are included in this report.

4. Comparisons to the previous year are not included in this press release where year on year changes are not statistically significant and could therefore be due to chance.

5. The base numbers in this report are rounded to the nearest five, with percentages rounded to one decimal place; the percentages given for each question may therefore not add up to 100 per cent. Where the report talks about the proportions reported by respondents, these have been calculated by weighting the response data with eligible population figures to estimate the proportion of the population who hold these views.

6. The references within this report to Activities of Daily Living are similar (but not an exact match) to the Care Act (2014) definitions:

7. These six activities of daily living all showed a statistically significant increase of between 0.7 and 1.3 percentage points. These activities are; getting in and out of a bed (or chair), self-feeding, dealing with finances and paperwork, bathing, getting dressed and using the toilet. The other two activities (getting around indoors, and washing face and hands) also saw increases.

8. As the questionnaire responses are estimates for the eligible population, numbers quoted in relation to these are rounded to the nearest 50. All estimated numbers are also available in the accompanying annex file.