Engaging Citizens Online part 7: Effective use of national information sources
May 5, 2017
One of the web’s inherent strengths is the ability to link from one site to another at the click of a button. Health and social care services have taken some time to develop on the web, but now there are many national and regional information sources that can be linked for the benefit of adult social care users and their carers.
The severe pressure on council budgets and resources means that it essential to make full use of these external assets rather than creating and maintaining unnecessary local web content. The Care Act 2014 provided a simplified national framework for adult social care across England, including guidance on personalisation and eligibility criteria. Although each council still has its own local offer and approach, the new legislation can make the use of national digital resources more relevant.
There is now a wide range of good online content available including widgets, data downloads, application programming interfaces (APIs) and apps that can be used locally. The pre-eminent statutory site is NHS Choices. Gov.uk also provides clear statutory information that is relevant to people with care needs and their carers, including regarding benefits entitlement. There are many others as well as charitable and commercial resources.
What are the types of national online web resources that councils should reference, and how?